New app for making virtual amends reeks of fake morality
HOW many of the “I’m sorries” said over the past 24 hours have been heartfelt?
None of those kicking off my belated e-mail replies (unless it’s urgent, three or four days is an acceptable delay).
And although I assured my husband I was sorry not to be accompanying him to that do last night, this wasn’t even slightly true: when he says the words “gala” and “auction” all I hear is “double life sentence, no parole”.
Basically, my own apologies tend to be either a form of punctuation or a behavioural tick not dissimilar to clearing one’s throat.
Thanks to then new app Sorry, we can now scattergun our virtual amends without meaning a word.
But, oh, won’t it feel good! Not for the apologee, who will be sent the equivalent of a Happy Face emoji in the place of a Thank You card, but for the Sinner in Chief, who gets to magnanimously lay it all out there in just another form of virtue signalling, without either having to look the person they’ve wronged in the eye or deal with any of the delicate wording issues that make apologising so laborious.
I’m assuming that, like predictive text, the app will have all the most banal and heinous offences laid out there – simply scroll down: “Sorry I . . . drank your birth date Cognac Prunier with my varsity mates/ slept with your best friend/ forgot Mother’s Day/ used your toothbrush to clean the bathroom grouting,” and that like the parent-prompted apologies of a child, they will reek of insincerity.
However, we know that the app will also allow you to “accept or reject” the apologies received from friends and family, just as we will be able to “accept and reject” those made by public figures, which will be put to a vote. That part of the Sorry app I do like: just think how satisfying it would be to stamp a big red “DENIED” on all those “Pay As You Go” celebrity mea culpas. But only if, once rejected, public figures are forced to make amends . . . for their botched amends. Harvey Weinstein’s rather bizarre apology – in which he somehow managed to quote Jay-Z – would obviously have been thrown back in his face, but then what? Shouldn’t he be made to go to contrition classes or at the very least burn all of his bathrobes? The Sorry app would let you, the viewer, decide – at least in your own head. What the app wouldn’t do – and what all the puffedup outrage, insincere apologies and fake morality out there fails to do – is make society any kinder or more compassionate towards each other. Sorry. — © Telegraph Media Group Limited