“I’m a Party Member” app aims to connect Communist Party Members
Once upon a time, if the predecessors of today’s Communist Party of China (CPC) members wanted to meet like-minded comrades and exchange revolutionary experiences (without being noticed by enemy spies), they had to walk hundreds and thousands of miles to gather at the place of pilgrimage Yan’an, Shaanxi.
But who has the time for Yan’an in 2016? We live in the age of Tinder. Finding fellow communists ought to be just a swipe away.
“I’m a Party Member” (我是党员) is an application available in iTunes stores in various countries including China, the US, Australia, and France. Think of it as Tinder for Communist Party members, but without the fun stuff.
Services include helping one comrade connect with another and providing real-time updates on the Party’s teachings. Eager to find someone we could stay up all night copying the Party constitution with, TWOC signed up and started searching. Ominously, the iTunes preview cites the Zhongzu Think Tank—who specialize in Party construction and developed this app—saying “this will be an exclusive platform for the Party members.”
Fortunately, it would appear the app is available to non-Party members as well, as all it takes to sign up is scanning one’s Chinese ID.
After verifying that you have a working Chinese phone number, a “nickname”is given to you by the system. This is generally a long, sprawling number together with the suffix “of the masses” (which is pretty dehumanizing, but we’ll let that slide). Once registered, there are two ways to connect with another comrade: search for Party members within five kilometers and match with them, or scan a QR code to add someone as a friend on the app.
Alas, despite searching since Monday, we couldn’t find a single Party member in our downtown Beijing area.
It will probably take a little longer for the app to gain more traction, and for more comrades to start searching for each other.
But for those who wish to actually date communists, well, you’re in luck. Even if “I’m a Party Member” can’t really connect you with another comrade, there are other options for communist dating and networking. OKComrade, which was launched in 2014 in the form of a Facebook page, for example, is a platform for socialists, communists and anarchists to meet like-minded revolutionaries—though TWOC does not vouch the quality of any anarchy-ridden dates you may end up going on.
Few on OKComrade claim to be Chinese Marxists, presumably due to the Chinese communists’ inability to travel through the Great Fire Wall to unite with comrades all around the world.
Alas. The masses, apparently, are in a lonely place online.