Vatorx2
110799

Sick of babies clogging your newsfeed? Try Unbaby.Me

Chrome extension targets keywords like "footsie" and "tantrum," replaces baby pictures with cats

Technology trends and news by Steven Loeb
August 5, 2012
Short URL: http://vator.tv/n/290e

Updated to reflect comments from Unbaby.Me

As someone in their mid to late 20s, I am now entering the stage of my life where a lot of my friends are getting married and then, inevitably, having babies. It seems like everyone I know has a kid these days, and my newsfeed is, literally, full of pictures of wedding dresses, engagement rings and tiny people.

Beyond blocking around half of my Facebook friends, there has been absolutely nothing I could do about these constant updates showing me that all of these people I have known for years and years were, GASP, becoming full fledged grownups.

That is, until now!

The release of new plug-in for Google Chrome, called Unbaby.me, has given those who are choosing to delay that next stage of life the option to block out all reminders of what they are supposedly missing.

Launched last Wednesday, Unbaby.me will scan a users Facebook newsfeed for certain words and phrases that indicate that a picture of a baby will be looking back at them.

The default phrases include: year old, so adorable, our family, just learned to walk, years old, month old, months old, so adorable, pajamas, eating solid foods, crawling, so cute, and mommy, looks like dad, toesies, just like mom, looks like mom, mother and, father and, cute baby, can't wait to meet, sockies, gerber, such an angel, what an angel, little angel, little princess, daycare, tantrum, won't stop crying, is finally napping, first steps, and carseat.

Users can also add their own specific keywords, such as the baby's name.

The picture is then replaced by something that is, apparently, more aesthetically pleasing, like a cat, a puppy, or a manatee. It comes with a default Instagram cat feed, though  users are allowed to choose what they would like the pictures to be, and can add as many feeds as they want. 

Note that the service does not detect all pictures of babies, only those with certain captions, so some of baby pictures will inevitably slip through the cracks.

The service describes itself as, “A Chrome extension that deletes babies from your newsfeed permanently – by replacing them with awesome stuff.”

Though it has been around for less than a week, it already has over 44,000 likes and had a quarter of a milliom hits in its first few days. Apparently people really hate looking at babies on Facebook!

The app was originally thought up by Yvonne Cheng, Chris Baker and Pete Marquis, who work for New York advertising agency BBDO.

"Pete Marquis, Yvonne Cheng, and I were just talking about Facebook, and how's devolved into baby pictures. Then we decided something had to be done. A chrome extension was easy to pull off," Baker told VatorNews.

So why is the app so popular?

"It's obviously a universal issue. It'd be interesting to see how other, more advanced civilizations dealt with this problem during their technological coming of age," Baker says.

While the trio don't have any plans to make any more apps that will block, Baker says that he would like to see one for "motivational quotes."

"People hate people who post motivational quotes. They're the worst. Especially start up people," he says.

"A motivational quote is like some insane form of red bull that keeps people going, only not. We don't have plans currently, but we'd love if people took this and ran with it. "

(Image source: fastdates.com)