One App – a trojan horse for sexual exploitation

Sending money is about to get a lot easier via Twitter.  That’s the opening line of the Next Web article on new tipping app, One.  One has released as a new tipping app for users of Twitter, allowing you to make micropayments of $1 to folks on the social network through an app on your iPhone.  It’s a great idea for supporting content creation online, but what the Next Web failed to mention, was One’s more shady feature.  Pics for tips.

Tipping money on Twitter isn’t a new thing, services have allowed the tipping of virtual currencies like Bitcoin and Dogecoin for years, but now One brings real fiat money to the social network.  But with one difference.  The ability for tip receivers to send private images back in gratitude.  If you really like what you’re getting, you can keep tipping; “make it rain,” as Next Web reported it.

2One market this service as a way to “get their private reactions” to your tips, but the close-up shot of the girl’s face with money raining around her says it all.  It may have a professional, sharing web persona, but this app is more than likely going to be used for paying girls and boys to send pictures for money.

And with a rating of “4+” on the iOS App Store, this app is available to children, allowing for a whole new level of seedy usage.

Perhaps this is not the intention of One.  It is entirely possible, maybe even probable, that the creators of One have purely innocent intentions, that they just wanted to contribute to a sharing society in which people can support other content makers.  But when people are using terms like “make it rain” and you’re showing green dollar bills puddling around private photographs in exchange for tips, surely something goes off in your mind that maybe, you’re crossing a line.

Surely, something should have gone off in the Apple review processors mind too, that this is an app that most certainly should not be made available to children.  I’m not here to open a debate on whether sex trade should be allowed on Twitter and iPhone, but I do think we should be making sure that those targeting vulnerable people online, are not being given new channels to do so.