Tic Tock

Girl on Phone

Does sitting through a movie without your phone give you the shakes?  Do you check into Foursquare to become the Mayor of the neighborhood bar before saying hello to the friends meeting you there? Do you check the weather on your phone before looking out the window to see if it’s raining?  If you answered yes to any of these questions, two Syracuse University students may be able to help you.

They’ve created an anti-social media app called “Tock” to get you off your phone and into the real world! (Is that the most modern oxy moron you’ve ever heard or what!)

First you link the app to your social media accounts (Facebook/Twitter).  Then you initiate a competition with friends to see who can last the longest without being on their phone.  Whoever wins racks up points. (The developers are even getting local restaurants and hang-outs to offer discounts to users with the most points.)

Doesn’t a break-up with your phone sound refreshing? Imagine going to brunch and not having to obsess over which filter makes your eggs look the most delicious? Or going to a cocktail party to actually meet people instead of compulsively check your e-mails to seem like you are busy. Or what about just enjoying the park with your dog rather than rushing to snapchat his newest tricks.

Sure, the smartphone is useful (just ask any tourist in NYC trying to find Times Square without asking for directions).  And, yes, it is amazing how technology has allowed us all to become the historians of our own lives. All this new app is trying to do is remind us of the joys of the original social media – HUMAN INTERACTION.

So we challenge you. Do you think you have what it takes to put your phone down? Download Tock, rally your friends, and make eye contact with your boyfriend for the first time in months.  We have just one question – how do you tell your friend when they’ve lost?  Telegram?

“Tock” will be available in the Apple store this summer!  Tell us – will you use it?

Laurie is a native New Yorker. She currently works in advertising, but most of her thoughts involve celebrity gossip, bagels, and pepperoni pizza. You can follow Laurie at www.lauriesadove.com.

Photo Source: Elite

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18 Comments

  1. I hate to be a stickler, but the article’s title – “Tic Tock – The Anti-Social Media App” makes a common mistake: asocial describes a disconnect or disengagement from society; anti-social is hostility or anger directed toward society. I hope Tock doesn’t lead us there, although it sounds like some readers may feel enraged when disconnected!

    1. I love a good stickler! In this case, “anti” refers to the compound of “social media,” not “anti-social.” Anti is defined as opposition “to a particular practice, party, policy, action,” which I think does maybe apply in this case? But in all cases, please do continue being a stickler – I like to be kept on my toes!

  2. The ultimate experience for speed and browsing quality is via Wi – Fi.
    It almost resolve your all problem what any laptop and PC is capable for.
    All this technological experimentation for her is not just great for my senior mom’s encouragement and
    emotional health, excellent though that may be.

  3. If you think that this is a good idea, then you may also enjoy reading–
    The Four Arguments for the Elimination of Television by Jerry Mander It is a powerful read and I implore those that find it rewarding to live life outside of our ever increasing technological world to check it out.

    peace all

  4. HA! I love it! Initially I thought, “Wow this sounds amazing!” But alas I am one step ahead of the game as I do not have any social media accounts…for this very reason. So the app is of no use to me :( However, I have plenty of friends who can benefit from this!!!

  5. I don’t have this problem because I never got a smartphone in the first place. I grew up programmed by my parents not to assume something was worthwhile just because “everybody does it.” I hated automobiles, and did not learn to drive and get a car until a job (newspaper reporter) absolutely required it (age 27). My wife and I have been carless for the past 13 years. Same with smartphones. It’s disturbing to get on a bus, a streetcar, an elevator, or walk into a theater lobby or coffee shop, and see everyone staring at the glow in their palm, or talking on the phone across the small table from their date. Aside from being only the latest and possibly greatest tool for capitalist society to increase each person’s efficiency as a consumption and production unit, it’s also the greatest distraction from your own mind. I think people turn to their smartphones so they don’t have to be alone with their thoughts, which inevitably leads to an honest look at yourself, especially your mortality, but also may prevent you from becoming the person you really ought to be.

    1. I really appreciate your comment, David. I think you’re right – that our hyper-intense focus on rapid information consumption is also an avoidance of looking at ourselves. I am just so happy that there are people thinking about ways to use technology to reconnect us to each other!

      Thanks again for sharing your thoughts!

  6. I want to know when this is available for the DROID would love to help make this a social movement – making a game out of it and tying it to small businesses would be what I am interesed in also as that is what I do help local businesses find innnotvative & unique internet marketing strategies. Thanks in Advance

    1. Hi, Margie! That’s a great idea! I’m not sure when it will be available for DROID – you may want to contact the developers directly. They seem to be aspiring to partner with local businesses, so it could be a match made in heaven!

  7. There’s a great book about this called “The Winter of our Disconnect.” At one point, the author points out that no one would ever call you and say, “Here’s a really funny cat video,” and then hang up. But this is how people communicate over email and other social media, and it’s really distracting, and borderline rude. I would love to get away from that!

    1. I will definitely check out that book, Laura – thanks for sharing it with us! And you’re so right – the cat video example is hilarious/sad/true!

      I’ve never been much of a phone talker, but texts are not a substitute, and I need to do better!

  8. Our phone is the biggest idol worship there is now, and I’m guilty of this too. I don’t want to miss opportunities to meet amazing people because I am so immersed in my email while on line at the supermarket, or the opportunity to look someone in the eye and just give them a smile – which may make a big difference in their day. I’m not sure what the answer is but when it comes to me I’ll certainly share it :)

    1. I’m impressed by your discipline! I’m curious – how is it? Do you feel “disconnected” or inconvenienced when you can’t find information you need immediately by looking on your phone? Or is it just 100% liberating?

      1. You know at first I was for maybe one month..but I just kept telling myself I have a dime in shoe well times the inflation from when my mom used to make sure every time I left the house I had one. Everyone I know has one so I just ask if its something I really need. PLus I have not broken the laptop and never will although I do not lug it with me….I just make sure I am prepared before I go out! :) and yes it has been so liberating no impersonal texts to deal with…and it is funny those texters never call lol

    1. I agree, Addie! I totally plan to download this when it comes out – I’m terribly guilty of being connected to my phone at all times!

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