Posted by Social Media Intern Veronica Owen
These days, it seems like there’s an app for everything on your smartphone — games, bus trackers, even your own personal trainer — but now there’s an app for staring at breasts?
Sadly, yes. Jethro Batts and David Boulton kicked off TechCrunch’s Disrupt Hackathon by presenting their version of a joke, the grossly-named “Titstare,” an app “where you can take photos of yourself staring at tits.”
But that’s not the worst of it.
Their taglines for this product include such innovative gems as:
The two jokers were having a grand time on the stage, trying to get the audience to participate in the world of Titsare. Their jokes continued throughout the presentation, making many women and men uncomfortable. And this was just the start of presentations at the TechCrunch event, which left many guests and presenters wondering where it would go from there.
When a myriad of people complained and demanded an apology, Jethro and David posted on Twitter in response to some of the outrage:
But that non-pology did not calm the minds of the public, many of whom responded by saying that a simple apology would not make everything magically better. Others said that sounded more like they were saying “just kidding” instead of an actual apology, which, as we know from elementary school, typically has the opposite effect of a genuine “I’m sorry.” Even TechCrunch apologized for the presentation when they saw the outrage.
Yet at the same time, a surprising number of people actually agreed that Titstare was just a hilarious joke and accused its critics of taking it too seriously. A disappointing poll hosted by Huffington Post shows that 73% of people believe that it should be taken as a joke. But what are these “jokes” saying to women, especially those who work in the technology industry?
Richard Jordan learned the hard way when he brought his 9 year old daughter to TechCrunch in hopes that she could see that women are accepted in the technology industry. Unfortunately, she ended up seeing the Titstare presentation first, making her father disappointed in the technology industry as a whole. The technology industry is not the only industry that needs to work on being an accepting environment for women, but after what is now known as the “worst joke in technology,” it seems that both TechCrunch and the technology industry as a whole have a long way to go. But at least we can take comfort in the fact that — given the negative response it received at the TechCrunch event — David and Jethro likely won’t be getting many offers from outside companies any time soon.