In an attempt to restore justice within the smoking community,
Marlboro has released
a student has invented a smartphone app called Bump a Smoke that enables people to trade virtual cigarettes for real ones. Based on bump technology, the app seems to "work" like this:
- A random, slothful person who's only half-serious about smoking approaches a hard-working, dedicated smoker who's just trying to enjoy their cigarette in peace. (These encounters typically take place several feet away from the entrances of bars, or inside NYC residences.)
- The random moocher says something like, "hey, I don't mean to bother you, but can I bum one?" to the startled smoker.
- Regret is feigned, and excuses are made: "Sorry, I left my pack at home."
- If they are kind and generous, the smoker equipped with cigarettes takes one from his/her pack and gives it to the moocher.
- Then, thanks to Bump a Smoke, magic and fairness happens! A "virtual cigarette" is transferred from the bummer's smartphone pack to the giver's smartphone pack.
- When the cigarette-giver's pack of virtual cigarettes becomes full, he or she can go to the store and redeem it for a real pack of cigarettes.
- A random, slothful person who's only half-serious about smoking approaches a hard-working, dedicated smoker who's just trying to enjoy one of their new cigarettes, and the process begins anew.
Bump a Smoke does seem to have some limitations. What if the person with cigarettes is too broke from funding other people's smoking habits to own a smartphone? Then the whole thing falls apart. However, if all smartphoning smokers download the app and only smoke Marlboro, which is probably what they should do anyhow, then Bump a Smoke works just fine.
Everybody deciding to not smoke at all would also make smoking less unjust.
Update: Turns out that the app is not a Marlboro creation but the work of Jennine Punzone—a student at Brooklyn's Miami Ad School. "I created it for a portfolio class assignment," she tells us.