By Jeffrey Bigman
Towards the beginning of the 1976 film Logan’s Run, the titular character, who is preparing for a party, walks over to a hollow metal cylinder in his room and summons a date holographically. The first person that appears is a man, muscular and shirtless, and Logan shakes his head disapprovingly. He grabs a remote and tunes the holograms the way one would tune a radio until a slim woman in a tunic appears. Then Logan welcomes her into his apartment and tries to have sex with her. After she repeatedly tells him no, he asks her if she prefers women. “No,” she responds, “nothing, I—I felt sad. I put myself on the circuit. It was a mistake.”
This prescient scene predicts the age of app-based sexual encounters that would not come for another thirty years. Now, through apps like Grindr, people do summon others to their apartments in order have sex with them. Through these encounters the Internet transforms suddenly, as it does in Logan’s Run, from a theoretical space where one exists only in photos and language into an inescapably concrete encounter with another person’s body.
The format of Grindr—a grid of photos of nearby (within about a 100 mile radius) men’s faces and chests—is shown below (Figure 1). You can select any of the men in the grid to open up a chat window with them or to see their ‘stats’ (Figure 2):
Those photos are from the Grindr press kit. I took a screenshot on my phone to compare the two images (Figure 3). The images from the Grindr press kit, predictably, clean up the app. They present the men as clean and fit and attractive. Also, notable, they have all of the “users” in their screenshot showing their faces and displaying their names, whereas in the screenshot I took (which is representative of Grindr as a whole, as I’ve experienced it), few people show their faces, or even their bodies, and no one shows their name. The press kit photos eliminate the privacy that the majority of their users clearly desire. This is, of course, very unsurprising—Grindr is a business selling its (ad-funded) product and would be expected to make such a promotional screenshot. The press kit from Grindr’s website describes the Android and iPhone app in the following way:
With over 2 million daily active users in 196 countries, Grindr is the largest all-male mobile social network in the world. Since its launch in 2009, Grindr has grown to become a fundamental part of users’ daily lives across the globe. Grindr has supplanted the gay bar and online dating sites as the best way for gay men to meet the right person, at the right time, in the right place. (Grindr Press Kit)
It also goes on to distinguish the free version of the app from a paid version called Grindr Xtra, which is ad-free and offers users the opportunity to see more men around them. Their mission statement claims that the app “connects gay men to the world that brings them happiness” (ibid). This description paints Grindr as a much more emotional app than it is understood to be by public opinion at large and the users themselves. The coded discussion of sex in the previously quoted passage is notable—the phrase “meet[ing] the right person” usually refers to a deep romantic and personal bond with a longtime partner (‘Mr. Right’), but the phrases that follow, “at the right time, in the right place,” signify a fast-food-esque convenience which is not generally found in the kind of romantic relationships that the beginning of the sentence suggests. The sentence becomes, then, about hooking up, the last two phrases of this sentence reconfiguring the concept of ‘the right person’ into a person that one wants to have sex with.
Grindr is, as the number of users suggests, a widely used app since it launched in 2009 just after with the rise of other social media apps like Facebook (2004) and Twitter (2006), building off the popularity of the iPhone itself, which came out in 2007. Unlike these other apps, Grindr offers not a connection to friends that one likely knows in ‘real’ life, but rather a connection with other gay men (its audience being, of course, gay men) for the purpose of having anonymous or semi-anonymous sex.
Grindr’s format suggests a free, post-sexual revolution world in which one can have endless sexual encounters with an endless grid of men. The fact that it is a gay app is not surprising, as people sometimes stereotype gay men as being voraciously sexual, although it’s not necessarily untrue that gay men are more likely to have anonymous sex. But the app does not, of course, operate as cleanly as its format and accompanying philosophy suggest. Grindr LLC refers to the technology as a “dating app,” which, as previously mentioned, provides “happiness” (ibid) despite the way it is actually used. They also, in keeping with their desexualized public relations façade, suggested on Thanksgiving in 2011 that users could use the app to ask their neighbors if they needed an ingredient (Fox). The fact that the company deliberately avoids mentioning that their app is used for sex itself suggests a stigma that the makers themselves want to avoid.
I originally set out to ask Grindr users about the stigma associated with homosexuality and with anonymous sex. I wanted to know why many users used the ‘discreet’ function of the app, which signals to other users that they wish to keep their identities hidden and which about half of the users I saw use. Often, they have no profile picture or have a photo of, say, a beach or a city street so as to avoid the risk of showing their faces. Those who do show themselves post flattering pictures that may or may not reflect the way they look.
I wanted to study the discreet function because, as someone who has been out since age thirteen, I find it difficult to understand people who remain in the closet for years—wouldn’t it be painful to hide yourself? To be the only one in the world who knows what you’re feeling? On the other hand, I despise the attempted collapsing of an individual into their sexual preferences. Assuming that these people are “hiding who they are” assumes that gay is who they are, abridging their personhood into a set of generic phrases.
But as I spoke to them, I became more interested in what they were saying about their use of Grindr and the rules within the community. Specifically, a few respondents spoke to me about the way other users saw them—often, they were disparaged because of their body type or race—and the effects this had on them.
During the interviews I was often reminded of the scene from Logan’s Run and felt that it had somehow predicted the feelings I was encountering. Of course, the film was not presenting the character’s sadness as a result of racial politics (everyone in the film is conspicuously white) or body image. But still it suggests that being “on the circuit,” even theoretically, creates those kind of scenarios because it functions by suddenly connecting two random people who don’t know each other at all.
For this ethnography, I interviewed three people in depth (one over email and two over Skype) and two others over Grindr’s messaging function. I sent the same message to many people on Grindr (“Hi, I’m doing a project on Grindr use in Amsterdam and I’d like to ask you a few questions”) and out of thirty-five, twelve responded. Most stopped answering questions after I’d asked about three. All of their usernames are anonymous, but to completely ensure their anonymity I have made up names based on common Grindr usernames.
Because of the anonymity of Grindr and the Internet in general (I don’t know any of the subjects’ names or what they look like), I think, they could share personal stories with me with almost nonexistent stakes; it didn’t matter that I knew because I didn’t matter to them. While I began speaking to the participants about the stigma of being gay, as mentioned, I mostly ended up talking about the users’ emotional experiences with Grindr.
The ‘stats’ (height, weight, etc.) posted along with their names are only approximations of what they have listed on their profile, so as to protect their anonymity, and I include them as a reminder of the prominence of corporeality on Grindr—everyone is, first and foremost, a (male) body of a certain age, race, and build.
I found one user, Volleyboy (white, single, 170 lbs, 25 years old), whose ‘About Me’ mentioned that he was about to delete his Grindr profile. He was under twenty-five and his picture was a chest selfie taken in a bathroom mirror. I sent him the standard message (“Hi, I’m doing a project…”) and started talking to him about being out. Eventually he agreed to video chat with me.
When we Skyped, I sat at my desk and aimed the camera at my face. When his camera feed appeared on my screen, it showed only a grainy, round torso in a button-up shirt. He didn’t want to show his face. It felt uncomfortable, unfair even, that I was letting him see me but he wasn’t letting me see him. But I reminded myself of the necessity of anonymity and the fact that he was opening up to me, or that hopefully he would open up to me.
After awkward introductions, I asked him if he would mind telling me why he was going to delete his profile. “I am done,” his torso said, “done with it.” Behind him, the image of his room appeared in poor quality: messy, clothes and empty plastic soda bottles on the floor, dark, and tinted blue.
“It’s stupid. The guys on there are not the kind of guys I want.” He explained that he saw the men on Grindr as being shallow, obsessed with fitness and skinniness, which they didn’t see him as possessing. Volleyboy himself never used the word ‘fat’ but that is, I am sure, how other men on Grindr thought of him.
“Most people I message don’t respond to me. Sometimes they ask me to send them more pictures of myself and I do, and then they don’t respond. I asked one guy why he wasn’t talking to me and he just said ‘you should go to the gym.’ Another guy told me I was fat.“
I asked him why he had posted that he was deleting his Grindr profile instead of just deleting it. He laughed. “So if anyone has any last things to say to me, like messaging me, they can do it. I’m going to be glad not using it anymore.” He was, it seemed, maintaining a kind of deflated hopefulness; maybe saying that he was deleting his profile would make someone who had wanted to talk to him, but had held back, finally speak up. But then again, this seemed unlikely to him, as his tone communicated—why would they have hesitated in the first place?
H_urv (20 years old, 5’10’’, 130 pounds), described a different experience. He wrote me in an email:
“I went on a couple dates with boys from Grindr,” he wrote me, “and it was always awful. The guys weren’t bad but the dates were. It was like no connection. We were two guys and we could have sex but like why were we talking. We would just have a date and then have sex and the whole date we knew we were going to have sex. It wasn’t even about the date. It was depressing.“
“One time I started talking to a boy. He seemed sweet and we talked for a bit. Then started texting. He invited me to dinner at his apartment. We made dinner and we talked and I could tell he was a virgin. And also that he had no friends. I felt bad asking but I asked if his parents knew he was gay and he said no.”
In Volleyboy’s case, the disillusionment he felt with Grindr stemmed from not being accepted into the community because of his body type. As anyone can see by logging on to the app, it is mostly populated by muscular young men; the majority of profile pictures show the user’s (muscular) chest in a bathroom mirror. This lives up to an old stereotype of gay men: that, beginning during the AIDS crisis, HIV-negative men began going to the gym obsessively to distinguish themselves from ill-looking HIV-positive men and consequently became (sub)culturally infatuated with muscular bodies (Bergling 2007: 85). This focus on fit bodies alienates people like Volleyboy who don’t fit the users’ idea of attractiveness.
H_urv, on the other hand, had the right kind of erotic capital (youth, skinny musculature) but did not find himself in the right place. It seemed, at least to me, that he was looking for a deep connection to others that he was not finding through the app. His anecdote about sleeping with the closeted boy also suggests that he felt a kind of pride, or at the very least a comfort, in being out, and was hoping to find that other people in his community shared his values. As the author of “Grindr’s Lonely Crowd” puts it, “[Grindr]’s not about: ‘We’re here, we’re queer’” (Fox 3). The app, it seems, is gay only incidentally—it is not a celebration of newly found gay rights or pride, or one’s interaction with a community. It’s about hooking up.
I asked H_urv about his other involvement in the gay community. “I go to a gay bar with some of my friends maybe once a week,” he wrote. “But that’s all about hanging out. There are guys there but people don’t usually go home together.”
“Why not?” I asked.
“They have other stuff for that, like Grindr. Well, and Tinder. One of my friends, a girl, matched with a girl on Tinder and saw them at the bar and they started talking. But they didn’t have sex or anything of course.”
“Is that because it was Tinder?”
“Yeah, it wasn’t on Grindr. They’re lesbians too, so they don’t usually have sex so fast.”
I asked another user, GrindrGuy (a generic username; Bisexual, 24, white), who had a face picture on his profile, about how he and other people on Grindr saw themselves as a community.
“Community?” he wrote back. “It’s not a community, it’s guys who are having sex with each other.”
A 2015 study of depression in gay and bisexual male youths on Grindr, published in The Journal of Homosexuality, found that the participants “reported experiencing a moderate amount of homophobia as well as a moderate level of depression symptomology” (Gibbs and Rice 2015: 11). The study connects these two, arguing that past experiences with bullying and discrimination, as well as unsupportive friends and/or family and lack of relationship with a community, are causally related to depression in gay male teens.
The study’s consideration of an individual’s relationship to a community explains, in part, H_urv’s and Volleyboy’s negative experiences of Grindr.
The study concludes that “one’s enacted connection with the gay community was found to be negatively associated with depression symptomology” (ibid 16), though it doesn’t consider the role of Grindr in this relationship. The study defines involvement with the gay community as both having an understanding of oneself as gay (and seeing this as an important part of their personality) and participation in gay activities (presumably, although the study does not specify, things like gay-straight alliances, support groups, or local gay centers), going to gay bars, and reading “gay materials” (8) like a gay newspaper or novels.
In Volleyboy’s case, the lack of a sense of community seemed to contribute to the harshness his rejection—because, as GrindrGuy’s response shows, the men on Grindr don’t see themselves as being part of a community in a way that would foster anything close to bonhomie. In fact, searching a grid of gay men for those that one finds sexually attractive can be seen as being antithetical to the basic structure of a community; whereas a community is based in people with similar characteristics (e.g. homosexuality, maleness) welcoming each other into a group, cruising parses such a group in order to separate out those who one finds desirable, effectively fracturing the would-be community. While the gay bar, in which cruising traditionally occurs, has been seen (by the previously mentioned study, for example) as a stronghold of the gay community, this is likely because cruising is not the only thing that happens in them; people, gay people, also meet each other and talk. Grindr, though, distills the gay bar into a single function: finding someone to have sex with.
Relatedly, many Grindr users reject people of nonwhite races. Grindr’s culture, as seen in Volleyboy’s story, supports the flat dismissal of anyone who does not fit the ideal body type. This applies equally to race. After seeing about ten users’ profiles ‘About Me’ pages saying some variation of ‘no asians,’ I decided to further explore race on Grindr. Volleyboy’s story had made me consider the ways that the culture of the app excluded certain groups, and it was clear from the users’ pages that they meant to do exactly that.
The object of Grindr desire seemed clear to me, but I asked a few of my respondents just to make sure.
“Hot sexy muscular young clean nice std free,” H_urv wrote over the app. I asked him what race he thought was preferable. “Not asian,” he said.
“What about black guys?” I asked.
“If they’re really hot.”
“So you like white guys better?”
“Why?” He didn’t respond to me, and instead asked for my email so we could talk somewhere other than the app itself. In another email I reminded him of this discussion and he simply responded that he sometimes feels bad when speaking to Asian men on Grindr. “I know they want to have sex but I’m not interested,” he explained.
Volleyboy, despite failing to embody Grindr’s definition of the perfect body, reiterated that same definition. “Young,” he said, “and not too muscular but kind of muscular. And cute.”
I asked him the same question about race. “I don’t really care,” he said.
“What kind of guy do you usually have sex with?”
“I’ve only met a few guys but never had sex with them. We just blew each other. But yeah they were white.”
Another user joked about the prevalent stereotypes that are often advertised in a person’s ‘About Me’ (there’s no need to protect his anonymity because anyone can download Grindr and see his profile):
By sarcastically commenting on the often racist/prejudicial/demanding ‘About Me’ pages, makes clear his disapproval of such behavior while making clear what kind of guy he wants—one who doesn’t hold such opinions. This also shows something that is obvious but may be easy to forget: that even within a community as small as gay white men who use Grindr in Amsterdam, there is a huge amount of diversity in opinion. I want to stress this even as I make an argument about what kind of place Grindr is in general; the community of app is not uniformly anything except a group of men looking for sex.
justlooking, a user whose profile describes himself as Asian (the app provides no specific options like Korean, Japanese, etc.—instead it allows users only to identify under this vague and generalized umbrella term), spoke to me about racism on Grindr. “Some guys are fine with it but yeah, a lot of the time people tell me they’re not interested.”
I asked him about people’s anti-Asian notices. “Yeah. If someone has ‘I don’t like asians’ on their profile I don’t bother.”
“How do you feel about it?”
“I don’t even care anymore,” he wrote. The racism on Grindr was, to him, simply a part of the app. The fact that the comments and attitudes are primarily directed at Asian men are, I think, because there are not many men on Grindr in Amsterdam who are of a race other than Caucasian or Asian; over the course of this ethnography I only saw three black men on Grindr. This could perhaps be because they are, like Asian men, seen as undesirable on Grindr, and so do not use the app for very long. There is, then, no need for white men on Grindr to specify their sexual dislike of those races.
While homosexuality is often associated with liberalism, both because liberal groups often champion gay rights and because, being a stigmatized minority, they sympathize with other stigmatized minorities. But as can be seen in the conceptualization of race on Grindr, the users, instead of subverting traditional and racist notions of sexual attractiveness, reproduce them avidly. Sexuality, and specifically who people find sexually attractive, are quite clearly not based on some objective Platonic standard but rather on a set of culturally specific and mutable characteristics; in the case of Grindr, the main characteristics are musculature and whiteness. This shows the pervasiveness of these norms—it is not as if, once one realizes one’s minority status, the fetters of constrained and socially circumscribed thinking evaporate. Instead, these constraints carry into one’s life as a minority, even affecting one’s opinion of themselves (e.g. internalized homophobia). As some have noted, “You can be victimized and in no way be radical; it happens very often among homosexuals as with every other oppressed minority” (Bersani 2010: 181).
This phenomenon also shows a lack of a sense of community within the app and, perhaps, outside of it as well. Not that sleeping with someone means accepting them as part of the community—but, clearly, the users who blatantly advertise that they’re not interesting in having sex with Asian men do not see them as being part of a shared gay community for which they have respect. Perhaps more importantly, the surprisingly prevalent criteria for sexually attractive men binds them together more strongly than their sense of a shared identity.
I began my project asking users about the stigma they felt because of their sexuality. I wanted to know if, in a purportedly liberal city like Amsterdam, it was more culturally shameful to be gay or to have a lot of anonymous sex. Both hook-up culture (which can mean anything from making out to having penetrative sex with more than a few people with whom one is not in a relationship) and the gay rights have only recently been embraced by western societies, and the extent to which they have been embraced is and has been widely debated. The users shared the effects the acceptance and failure of acceptance has on them.
Two respondents specifically felt the stigma of their sexuality. Guy18 (26, 6’’, Asian) and Volleyboy, both of them under twenty-one, spoke to me about how their relationships with their friends and family were affected by their orientation.
“I’m not open to my friends, I’m bi, and I don’t think they would accept me,” Guy 18 wrote over Grindr’s messaging function. His profile picture is also a bathroom mirror selfie of his shirtless chest. I asked him if his being bisexual rather than gay had any influence on the situation.
“Yeah,” he wrote. I asked him to explain. “I can pretend that I just like girls and it’s not hard to talk to my friends about girls.”
“But I still like guys.”
His friends, he said, called things “gay” derogatorily but had “never [said] anything openly against people being gay,” contributing to an atmosphere that made him uncomfortable coming out to them. He wasn’t sure that they would reject him, but didn’t want to risk it.
Volleyboy is also not out to his friends or family. “If friends know I’m gay they end the friendship,” he had explained on Grindr. Over Skype, I asked him how he knew this. “First of all they have said they don’t like gay people, and second we live in a community in which homosexuality is not fully accepted.” I asked him if he didn’t see the Netherlands as an accepting country.
“Here, just because someone is gay it’s a reason to beat him up,” he said. “I’m discreet for that.”
The previously mentioned experiences are, while not outliers, not exactly staples of the Grindr experience either. Clearly, Grindr continues to be used widely and, often, enthusiastically. As Hot_19 (white, 19, 120 pounds) put it when I asked him why he used Grindr: “I like it lol.” Many of the people I spoke to who shared disheartening experiences about Grindr also had positive stories to tell. H_urv, for example, spoke of meeting up with an attractive guy and enjoying the sex just for what it was.
While Hot_19 didn’t respond after my first question, others filled in the blanks. “I like fucking guys,” one usernameless user told me. “Not most of the guys are hot,” wrote Hung, “but sometimes you find one who is and you can have fun.”
These responses made me think that it’s moot to think of Grindr as failing to be what, by definition, it is not. And these were, after all, sex-positive attitudes expressed by young men who were clearly quite comfortable with their sexuality. The app also provides, to the users who meet the standards of the community, a nontrivial amount of sexual pleasure which gay men have been historically unable to experience.
I spoke to student20 (no stats on her profile), a transgender Grindr user, about her experiences with the app. “I have Im trans on my profile because I dont want pe[o]ple to msg me and not know,” Student20 explained. I had assumed that Student20 had been assigned female at birth and was a gay man, Grindr being, of course, an app for gay men. But when I spoke with her I realized that she had actually been assigned male at birth and was a straight woman. Confused, I asked her to explain.
“I have a penis,” she said. “No bottom surgery yet and no top surgery. But I dress like a girl. Some guys like girls with penises.” Her story presented a complex interplay between people’s interpellations of others’ genders and the latter’s self-proclaimed identities—while Student20 sees herself as a woman, is a woman, the men on Grindr see her as male because of her genitalia and other primary sex characteristics. And, as she told me, she didn’t mind this. She is attracted to men and “can never find a straight man who wants [her];” some gay men, though, find what they see as her ‘male’ body attractive.
This was confirmed with a look through Grindr profiles in the ‘Trans’ filter: men specified that they were only attracted to ‘traps,’ an Internet slang word referring to men who dress as women or to trans women who have not had surgery. The term is based on the idea that one thinks the ‘trap’ is a woman, only to find a penis when they start hooking up (Know Your Meme), and is, of course, often considered extremely offensive. Student20, though, explained that she liked the term. “It lets me know what guys want.”
I pressed her: “You don’t care that the guys don’t see you as a girl?”
“No,” she responded, “I don’t care how they think of me.”
Student20’s story struck me as shocking and actually quite beautiful, if also quite challenging. Sexuality was, in this case, fluid and open, as, I think, it should be. Student20 could live as she wanted and enjoy the sex she was having, without needing to get surgery to be considered a ‘real woman.’
But the men didn’t see her as a woman—they didn’t understand that she was, in actuality, a woman. As seen in the previously mentioned case of gay men on Grindr rejecting certain races, one’s homosexuality does not make one automatically understand or support liberal causes like, in this case, trans rights. Additionally, it shows how the community of Grindr reproduces and performs biases. This can be seen especially in the use of the word ‘trap’—it is a word that clearly originates from straight male usage (specifically on 4chan [Know Your Meme], a semi-Deep Web forum that caters to straight males), referring to the ‘discovery’ of a penis on what was previously considered to be a woman’s body (a woman with whom they were trying to have sex). This term, based so deeply in a lack of understanding—a likely malignant lack—of trans people and trans rights, has been taken up by gay men on Grindr even though the logic of the term does not apply to them; they would presumably not be trying to have sex with a woman, only to ‘discover’ a penis (meaning that the term ‘trap,’ interestingly enough, has the straight male gaze built into it), and yet they use it to describe the women (that they consider men) with whom they have sex.
In fact, it seems that the app encourages these kinds of prejudices. In tunneling social interaction into a search for a sexual partner, Grindr favors the users’ preferences over anything else. In other words, making an app that sees orgasm as the ultimate goal has the adverse effect of allowing other values, especially cross-identity understanding, to fall to the wayside. The result is an app that is an exaggerated microcosm of the social forces that created it, an app that, like its parent society, excludes those of nonwhite origin and of unsatisfactory physical fitness and alienates minorities instead of seeking to understand them.
But there remains, at least for me, the question of pleasure and of the moral status of that pleasure. Clearly, the app provides exciting and freeing access to sexual pleasure for many people, an access which even fifteen years ago would have been difficult to imagine. It takes advantage of the historical confluence of a qualified social acceptance of open sexuality and the newfound technology to instantly and virtually connect with strangers. But the pleasure derived from this sexual enterprise is tainted with what I have described in this ethnography. This pleasure is, in fact, almost exclusively for the white and fit and normatively gendered, and those, of course, economically stable enough to own an iPhone or Android phone. While of course there is pleasure to be had by those outside of some of those groups, as seen in Student20’s case, it cannot be denied that the structural basis of Grindr is exclusion, as much as it cannot be denied that the app also gives pleasure.
When Logan from Logan’s Run shakes his head disapprovingly at a man who wants to have sex with him, a sequence that was presumably played for laughs, it becomes clear that his pleasure is bound up in the disapproval of the pleasure of others. This knotted sexuality can also be seen, in abundance, in Grindr interactions. The man and the woman he conjures holographically, from a bluish red CGI mist, are both conventionally attractive, as is everyone else in the film—blonde, fit, the man muscular and the woman skinny. The film failed to conceive of the possibility of nonwhite or ‘out-of-shape’ attractiveness, as does Grindr. It must be remembered however, as showed in his joking expression of dissidence, that Grindr is, above all else, not one thing, but rather a community (however loosely defined, even as an anti-community) of intersecting people with differing views and ways of being that cannot be easily summed up.
Bergling, Tim (2007). “’Circuit’ Court.’ Chasing Adonis: Gay Men and the Pursuit of Perfection. New York: Harrington Park.
Bersani, Leo (2010). Is the Rectum a Grave? And Other Essays. Chicago: University of Chicago.
Fox, Max (2014). “Grindr’s Lonely Crowd.” The Gay & Lesbian Review Worldwide 21(5): 19-21. GenderWatch.
Gibbs, Jeremy J., and Eric Rice (2015). “The Social Context of Depression Symptomology in Sexual Minority Male Youth: Determinants of Depression in a Sample of Grindr Users.” Journal of Homosexuality 63(2): 1-22.
“Press & Media | Grindr.com.” Grindr. Web. 20 Dec. 2015. <http://www.grindr.com/press/>.
“Traps.” Know Your Meme. 2010. Web. 20 Dec. 2015. <http://knowyourmeme.com/memes/traps>.