Stats released by an app for planning tube routes gives an indication that gender stereotyping is alive and well. mxData’s Tube Map app has been downloaded 631,000 times in the last year and apparently 65% of the downloadees were men.
In a rather bold and arbitrary interpretation, the company have decided that this means women are less able to find their way on the tube in a sensible fashion and men are better at not having to ask directions. David James, CEO of mxData, said:
‘The saying goes that men never ask for directions; however, with the number of map apps out there, men can keep their pride in check and be rest assured that they can get where they want to be without having to stop and ask people.’
We hadn’t realised that directional male pride was in need of its very own app to find its way around the tube, but it seems that asking strangers the way is for girls. According to a quote on the company’s press release:
‘Women are more likely to either leave their journey to chance or discuss the best route with friends and even strangers on the tube.’
Despite their sex, our female Londonistas find that a combination of tube maps, Journey Planner and common sense are useful in route planning and haven’t needed to accost strangers or bore friends to find their way around the tube network.
We do wonder how those clever men get a signal underground to check their route though.*
*Correction: Whether you're a man or a woman Tube Map actually does allow you to route plan around the tube map when out of signal ie underground - although clearly the GPS and live info won't work - but still, nifty (Ed).