Hello everyone! We have exciting news-- we are preparing for the launch of the Wing Ma'am app. We just released a new version of the website and have been supported by an incubator program to receive the funds we needed to complete the app. The app went through a total make-over :)
As we prepare for launch, we are encouraging people to take 2 minutes to sign up and help grow our numbers and raise awareness. Please sign up and share with your networks!
Great news! Although IndieGoGo didn't reach its goal, we were given so many opportunities just through spreading awareness about the app! We had a few features in publications, interviews with major newspapers and connections to hundreds of volunteers and advocates for our app, all routing us on. We couldn't have asked for more to come from this! Due to all of the feedback and word of mouth enthusiasm, we were recently accepted into an accelerator program that gave us the funding we needed to finish our product. We have all of you to thank for that! Check out the full story and what happened:
Soon we intend to beta the app and involve all of you for testing!
The best way to stay in touch with us for Beta Launch updates is by liking our Facebook Page, where we'll keep you in the loop! http://www.facebook.com/wingmaamapp
Hello everyone! Thank you so much for all of your support in attempting to reach our goal with this campaign. All of the emails we received routing us on was humbling! Not to mention, all the free press!
Unfortunately, we didn't make it. That doesn't mean that Wing Ma'am won't continue. In fact, we're well on our way to developing a demo that we will ask you to test! I'll be in touch with everyone who donated to see if you're open to being part of the test team. Your voice matters, and it is what will drive this app to be everything it can be!
Wing Ma'am is not a failed mission.. it is only just the beginning. We won't let this deter us from our goals. Without this campaign, we would have never met our Alpha team. You- the people who support this. And we want to make you as much a part of this development process as we are :)
So are so lucky to have made so many connections, through the funders as well as the people who filled out the volunteer form on our website. We are also inspired by all the people that support this endeavor. When polled, 98% of LGBT women said they WOULD use an app like this. This is filling a necessary need. Our goal is to build a great functioning app with a community feel that will be brewing with users and activity. With the connection to all of you who supported this campaign, followed it, kept up with it, shared it through their social media feed, etc., we have the base to do all of this!
Thank you, again! We aren't let down, we're only more determined! We'll stay in touch and be completely transparent with all of our endeavors.
What's this all about?
For years, articles in After Ellen and Autostraddle have questioned why the LGBT women's community doesn’t have its own “Grindr-like” app. Even Forbes magazine frets, “Lesbians just have to resort to Words with Friends!” A quick search on Reddit comes back with multiple "Where is our Grindr?"-like threads. In a particular thread, one user suggested that if an app for LGBT women is created, it should be called “Vagindr.” Sorry, username Inappropros. We’re um, going to take a different approach with the name of our app. ;)
Wing Ma’am is no longer a matter of if; it is a matter of when.
What is Wing Ma'am?
It's finally (almost) here! Wing Ma’am, the Android and iPhone mobile app for LGBT women and our genderqueer lovers and friends is being built now! It's everything you've been waiting for, but we need the initial push to get this into your hands. Soon, this thing is going to take off like thunder! Wing Ma’am is a social guidebook that uses location-based technology to safely connect you with other LGBT users in your area. You can chat, message and connect with your future hiking buddy or even meet princess charming! The app is paving the way towards a stronger LGBT community by keeping you “in the know” about LGBT-friendly events in your area, while allowing you to create your own events to find like-minded people. You can start anything, from a small craft night to a large queer dance party. It’s community building-- reinvented!
Oh yeah, and did we mention that the app will be free? And available for Android, iPhone, and iPad!
Not everyone will use the app in the same way, but everyone will feel the same effect. Through every touch-point, we want to create an experience for you -- an experience that is fun, safe, inclusive and personal. An experience that helps you feel closer to a growing LGBT community. This is an app For Us, By Us. This is Our Social Movement!
And if you’re reading this now, it means you’re one of the first on board! We promise you’ll have major bragging rights soon.
In Search of the Easy Button
My name is Ariella Furman. Throughout my 11 years of being out and proud, I have always been in search of an "Easy Button" for being gay. I daydreamed about owning X-Ray glasses that would pinpoint (with a rainbow radar) the nearest cute LGBT girl. Perhaps the radar would be able to sense her undying passion for softball and Tegan and Sara. Then, I would approach her, buy her a drink, and we’d live happily ever after...
Ok, so we’re far away from X-Ray glasses! But nevertheless, technology is an amazing thing. It is constantly growing and a great asset for our community. With Wing Ma’am, the use of location-based technologies can forever change (for the better) how we interact and make friends. As a certified technology nerd, I am willing to step up and lead this revolution with my dedicated and talented team.
The Inspiration for this App
Let’s jump back a bit.
Two and a half years ago I moved to Pittsburgh, PA. In an attempt to make new friends in the LGBT community, I started a monthly party called Impulse. Within two years, Impulse was connected to 4,000 LGBT women through social media and received attendance of up to 550 people at its events. I was shocked-- I never thought it would grow to be so big! I learned that the reason Impulse had become so successful was that women in Pittsburgh were desperate for an outlet. In some ways Impulse had helped to fill a hole in the community.
I met one of my best friends, Ellie Gordon, through the Impulse events. One day, Ellie and I were taking a walk. She was telling me about how she had the opportunity to play around with Grindr via her gay male friend. I already knew a little about it. Basically, gay guys can locate each other using this app and pinpoint how much distance is between them. Grindr now has 4 million members. It sort of reminded me of my X-Ray glasses idea! Ellie suggested that I start a similar app for LGBT women. I laughed it off at first, but she succeeded in planting the thought in my head.
Over the next few weeks with this in mind, I saw the opportunity for this app everywhere I went. Hanging out in my local straight bar, I spotted a cute girl. “Straight hipster or lesbian?” With an app, I could pull out my phone and see if she was on there. The following Saturday night, I found myself having single woes with nothing to do. With an app, I could see what the nearest cute girl was up to. Days later, I found myself at my desk saying, “How am I supposed to weed through 500 Facebook events to find the LGBT-friendly ones? Where is my easy button??” An app could fix all of this!
And Thus Wing Ma'am Was Born...
Fast forward, it was time to do this!
With a little help from my friends as well as the LGBT community in Pittsburgh, we set out on a journey! We started by conducting surveys with the participation of hundreds of women. One of the most important questions we asked was, “What are the hurdles in the LGBT Women’s community?”
This feedback helped us to determine what features the app needed to have. We wanted the app to be easy, fun, and "in-the-know." However, it was apparent that the app had even bigger shoes to fill! So, we added 4 more goals. Wing Ma'am needs to:
1) Not just be a hook-up app. If you want to use it to hook-up, that's totally cool with us. But we want Wing Ma'am to be about everything: the social networking, the profile-making, the friendships, the matchmaking, the event making, and sure, the inevitable hook-ups that will probably happen.
2) Break down social barriers in the community.
3) Inspire unity amongst women and our genderqueer lovers and friends.
4) Start a social movement.
There is one other step before any of the above can happen. Wing Ma'am needs to build a big... no HUGE community of users in EVERY city. Through our extensive resume of leading LGBT events, we are the team that can make this happen! We know how to build an active community, and we will build that community for you through this app. We have the most passionate marketing folks on our team as well as a solid plan in tact to get this out to the most users.
Here's Where You Come In
We’ve self-funded this project as far as we could (we only have a few George Washingtons and a button left), and now we’re looking for that extra push to get it up and running! With your donations, we can fund the final stages of the technological development with our talented team, get it accepted into Apple and Android stores, and release it into your hands! Most IndieGoGo campaigns have been successfully funded by streams of small donations, so every little bit helps!
We're asking the LGBT community to unite together and help support us. We can't start creating a social movement without the help of YOU-- the first adopters, innovators, and leaders who will help give us that first push. It will always be that first push that will be the most important. No matter your reason for donating, know that your contribution will go a long way in helping to build our community stronger. And that each of us will benefit from this in our own unique way through the new friendships, relationships and opportunities that will undoubtedly come.
Wing Ma'am IS Free!
Anyone can sign up for Wing Ma'am when it becomes available and use all of its basic features for free. However, you can sign up to use an enhanced version of the app, Wing Ma'amPlus, to make your experience even better! We wanted to explain this as many of our reward tiers offer the Wing Ma'amPlus experience.
At only $4.99 a month, Wing Ma'amPlus opens up the following enhanced features:
• Unlimited People Search: Load as many people as you want.. or until your phone crashes!
• Be In The Know: See who has RSVPed to an event.
• Featured Events: Any events you create will be messaged out to the users in your area.
• Push Notifications: See if anyone has messaged you without having to launch the app.
• Avoid banner ads.
But wait, to make this a little more interesting we’re going to pick three cities where we will premiere the app before anyone else gets their paws on it. These cities will be really special. They will be the first to provide us with feedback on their experiences. They will be the people that shape the fate of Wing Ma’am! Everyone else will have to wait an additional 4 to 6 weeks for the national release.
So, how will we determine these 3 lucky cities? Once we reach our $20,000 goal, we will host a survey on our website and on our IndieGoGo Page where you can vote for your city! As a donor, you will receive an email alerting you as soon as the survey has begun. The 3 cities that receive the most votes will win the contest! We will unlock those cities plus a 50 mile radius around them.
There's one other opportunity to get around this and still gain early access to the app. Pledging $2,500 or more allows you, the donor, to actually buy the city of your choosing! So, there may be more than 3 winning cities depending on who takes advantage of this option.
June 2013- We achieve our funding goal. We finish coding of the app and prepare it for release.
July 2013- We will release the app to the 3 winning cities, or more if anyone pledges at least $2,500.
August 2013- Wing Ma’am opens to all US cities and achieves critical mass!
Other Ways You Can Help
Can’t pledge much? Don’t fret; even small amounts go a long way! You can also contribute to the social movement in the following ways:
• Feedback and Suggestions- We’re listening! What do you think about this? Do you have any suggestions? Send us an email at email@example.com.
• Passing around the link- Word of mouth is a really powerful thing! We are a grassroots campaign; the way we’ll get this movement rolling is by more people spreading the word. Feel free to share our IndieGoGo link via your Facebook or Twitter newsfeeds!
• Volunteers- You can be a Wing Ma’am Street Team member by spreading the word in your city using our marketing box! If you have a few hours per week to volunteer, we’ll reward you with Wing Ma’amPlus, some cool swag, and bragging rights. You can start as early as July or August! Click here to fill out a volunteer form.