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Cloak

Want to be alone? Try out Cloak, the anti-social network

We’ve all been there: you’re walking down the street when someone calls your name. It’s a particularly talkative former colleague. Ordinarily you’d be happy to talk to them, but right now you just want to get home, slip on your fat pants and veg out. Luckily, there’s now an app specifically designed to help you be anti-social.

Nur Bremmen: Staff reporter
Nur is an enigma with a passion for creating words. He recently entered a love affair with technology and chorizo sausages. He travels a lot -- you... More

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The app, called Cloak, describes itself as providing an “incognito mode for real life” and is the creation of programmer/creative Brian Moore and former Buzzfeed creative director Chris Baker.

It works by scraping Instagram and Foursquare to “let you know where all your friends, ‘friends’, and nonfriends are at all times so you never have to run into that special someone”.

Currently available on iOS lets you check a map to see if anyone is nearby, but also gives you access to a list mode that shows you how far away any flagged contacts are.

The company says it is working on adding more social networks, but you shouldn’t expect to be able to avoid that person you follow on Twitter just to fuel your passive aggressive rage. As the app’s iTunes listing notes, the location data on Twitter is pretty sketchy even when users have location turned on, which most don’t.

As the Washington Post notes, this isn’t Baker’s first foray into the anti-social side of online networking.

His previous efforts include the popular browser plugin Unbaby.me, which he morphed into a fully-blown startup called Rather.

Another recent project called Hate With Friends meanwhile lets you know if you and a Facebook friend mutually dislike each other.

“Personally, I think we’ve seen the crest of the big social network,” Baker told the Post in an email. “Things like Twitter and Facebook are packed elevators where we’re all crammed in together… I think anti-social stuff is on the rise. You’ll be seeing more and more of these types of projects.”