Why is our app called RAKKOON?

That's a good question—one that has a fun answer and some fun videos to go with it!

When RAKKOON founder Scott Winn was first looking at names for the new parentware app he was contemplating, he knew he wanted something unique. There wasn’t anything out there named “rakkoon” with K's instead of C's. It was a recognizable (although made-up) word and one that had an obvious and easy pronunciation. All these things made it a good choice, semantically.

The word also came with a host of positive connotations, courtesy of the fine reputation held by actual raccoons. For example:

Raccoons are fascinating

Procyon lotor is the latin name for the common raccoon. In Latin lotor means "the washer." Raccoons routinely appear to wash their food before eating it. People used to think this was for the same reason we wash food—to clean it. But then researchers uncovered the real reason: raccoons “see” with their hands.

According to Northern Woodlands magazine, a publication run by Vermont’s Center for Woodlands Education, raccoons are effectively “seeing”an item when they touch it, gathering “nearly two-thirds of [their] sensory data … from cells that interpret various types of touch sensation.” Their dexterous paws contain “four to five times more mechanoreceptors than most mammals,” enabling them to grasp, manipulate, and interpret the objects as well as humans and primates. A key component that facilitates this sense of touch is water, which helps amplify the receptiveness of the nerve endings in the paws and significantly heightens the raccoon’s tactile senses.

I love the idea that raccoons use their sense of touch to interpret their world—is it a stretch to think that's an analogy for teens using their thumbs to scroll through their social lives?

Raccoons are good parents

Young are born blind and helpless in a tree den, their eyes open at 18 to 24 days of age, and they are weaned after 70 days. By 20 weeks old the young regularly forage with their mother at night and continue to stay in the den with her. The young remain with their mother through their first winter, becoming independent early the following spring. Mothers and young often den nearby even after they have reached maturity.

Need more convincing? Read this.

And then watch this:

Amazing... #Repost @donnamaria1961 ・・・ 💜💙💜💙 A Mother's Love. Raccoons are far too often considered pests and I know of too many acts of cruelty against these adorable creative little bandits. If we didn't take over their natural habitats they wouldn't be in ours. Raccoons clearly have strong family bonds just like us. Please never hurt these animals. Caption by @donnamaria1961 Video Repost @xrelovedx and credit to original...... 💜💙💜💙💜💙💜💙💜💙 #raccoon #raccoons #family #love #dedication #compassion #cute #cuteaninals #animals #respectanimals #animalrights #helpinghand #teamwork #love #like #friends #camping #safe #momtotherescue #mom #helpful #instagram #instadaily #instagood #vegan #vegansofig

A video posted by My Dream For Animals (@mydreamforanimals) on

Raccoons are curious and adaptable

They're so resilient, so comfortable in such a variety of conditions, that according to a recent article in the New York Times, they've even invaded Brooklyn (and they seem to prefer the same hipster neighborhoods as their young human counterparts).

Raccoons are “truly incredible in their adaptability,” one expert said. That helps explain why they are proliferating throughout the city, especially in Brooklyn.

Soft-hearted city animal trappers routinely drop off the raccoons they catch in the nearest wooded area, instead of exterminating them as dictated by NY state law. But that's a problem, too.

"People see wooded areas as the animals’ natural habitat, where they belong. But these are city raccoons that tend to make a U-turn for civilization when dropped off in nature," said Stanley D. Gehrt, a wildlife ecologist at Ohio State University who has studied urban raccoons for two decades.

Clearly, raccoons are clever. They're also curious. And hungry. Watch what happens when a raccoon gets ahold of some cotton candy.

Yes, raccoons have also been known to dig through the trash...

At the end of the day, our RAKKOON app is sort of the digital equivalent of this. Parents can quickly access bits of concerning content that might be finding their way onto kids' social media feeds. Then parents can help coach kids to deal with it.

So RAKKOON is an app for curious, hands-on parents who want help digging through the digital trash on their kids' social media feeds. Makes sense to us. :)

One last thing

If you're still reading, you deserve a reward. Here it is.