I am not sure it is just an app. I am beginning to believe that “Next Door”—that place on your phone you can connect by zip code and interest—is more of a subculture. It is undoubtedly a sociologist’s dream.

Here is the appeal: You can question city council decisions and never leave your armchair! Who doesn’t love that? With some semblance of anonymity and a great deal of authority, you can air your views on everything from the homeless to the best place for tacos. By the way, thanks for all those taco recommendations!

And here is what I have learned about San Clemente through this electronic neighborhood meet-and-greet.

There are some outraged people here, but they are few. Mostly there are people who willingly admit that we live in a remarkable town. They share ideas, help find your lost dog and warn you about coyotes in the neighborhood. They get excited about festivals, trolleys and your new business. In short, they are good people, grateful for a good life and mindful of those who may be struggling. They welcome the military families and boast about the fact that we are a two-train-station town.

Apps like “Next Door” are what you make them and, as with most things, San Clemente makes the best of it.

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