Everyone is talking about the newest app, Yik Yak, which is popular across college campuses as an app where people can post anonymously. However, is Yik Yak a safe app to use? Does it cause unnecessary cruelty?
I think Yik Yak is a great way for the students on campus to bond. Students can post their thoughts about classes, talk about their excitement for weekend events and comment about food in the dining halls. A sense of community is created when students connect over mutual feelings about events or occurrences on campus. Students have the ability to comment on each other’s posts. When Yaks are posted, they can be voted “up” or “down.” When students relate to another person’s post, they can cast an “up” vote for the Yak. This is similar to “likes” on Instagram or “favorites” on Twitter.
Yik Yak is a fun way to interact with those around you. Since it is anonymous, it gives people more confidence to post, without worrying about other people’s opinions. At Fairfield, the main topics posted on Yik Yak consist of the food at the Main Dining Hall, plans for the weekend and inside jokes about the school. When used appropriately, it reflects the friendly atmosphere present at Fairfield. Students can freely engage with one another in a single app. When used inappropriately, the app can ruin the bond between students.
Additionally, Yik Yak gives its users the opportunity to “peek” at what students are “yakking” about on other college campuses around the nation. It includes schools such as Providence College, Ohio State University, Hofstra University and many more. By reading different posts from other college students, users can see the similarities and differences between schools. It is an interesting opportunity to learn about the perspectives of students attending other universities.
Guidelines for users are located in the app under the “Rules and Info” tab. These rules emphasize that bullying is not tolerated on Yik Yak. When people post mean Yaks, other users have the obligation to “down” vote these Yaks. If an individual’s posts are constantly being voted “down,” then his or her account will be suspended.
By Josue Jorge
There are apps for just about anything in the app store: apps for cooking, apps for scheduling and apps for finding people in your area that are interested in cuddling. As some of these apps prove to be very useful, others are downright reckless and sometimes harmful.
One of these apps is the infamous and very popular Yik Yak.
What Yik Yak is known for is encouraging you to say some pretty nasty and vile things, things you would not normally say. After downloading Yik Yak, a student may recognize the power behind anonymity, and soon find themselves senselessly making posts that can end up hurting another student or faculty member’s feelings.
While bullying another person is blatantly bad, it is easily disregarded when anonymity is taken into account. No one is safe with Yik Yak as it allows for anyone to become a target, a compelling enough reason to consider this app more harmful than good.
When inventing the app, developers Brooks Buffington and Tyler Droll said they intended for it to be used for the purpose of sharing important information across campuses and for sharing harmless funny stories. However, the app on our campus has so far been misused.
From opinions on classes and teachers to comments on what the Barone food does to one’s insides, Yik Yak is often utilized as a platform to complain, complain and complain with an occasional insult thrown in the mix.
The obvious way to avoid the Yik Yak community is of course by avoiding the app altogether. When used correctly, it can be helpful and fun, but otherwise when used inappropriately, it can become a dark and scary place. The potential consequences can easily cause unnecessary trouble across campus. Fight the urge and don’t use Yik Yak unless you know how to be a respectful and commonsensical user.