Yik Yak is back

Students Kaylie (18) and Angie (18) are both users of the After School mobile app.

Photo Credit: Sophie Ferreri

Students Kaylie (’18) and Angie (’18) are both users of the After School mobile app.

by Caroline Griffin and Sophie Ferreri

Glen Rock students replaced Yik Yak, the mobile app banned on high school property, with a similar app, After School, to fulfill their social media occupied after school hours. Both apps share the same anonymous cyber gossip platform.

“I like the app because it’s nice to hear things about people that you normally wouldn’t and nobody would say to your face,” Angelina Deaett (’18) said.

After School requires verification from the students to limit them to only accessing their own school’s feed. It asks the users to sign into their Facebook accounts, which allows the app to ensure they are Facebook friends with their peers.

Once the student is confirmed, they have the ability to access their own school’s page of anonymous comments written by and about their peers.

The content displayed on the feed makes some students apprehensive to use the app in fear of finding vulgar comments about them or their peers.

“My main opinion is that I don’t think students should be using the app because it targets people and is a place for people anonymously,” Kaylie Ernst (’18) said.

The app also demands a 17 or older requirements in order for users to view more provocative comments. This makes After School not only a potential platform for cyber bullying, but also an inappropriate environment.

“The part that’s concerning to me is not only the bullying aspect, but it tells you only sexual and drug aspects can be accessed when your 17 or older so obviously they’re promoting certain behavior,” Mr. Pasciuto, assistant principal, said.

Yik Yak was banned from the school due to excessive amount of cyber bullying. Some believe that After School resembles Yik Yak because the anonymous concept allows students to have freedom to say anything without consequences because their name is not attached.

“We did have some issues with Yik Yak last year and so forth. Unfortunately, although some may see some benefits in these, some of them I question. I see some as targets for negativity as well. We had some problems with Yik Yak in terms of targeting other students and making fun of that. This looks like it could possibly have the same feature,” Mr. Arlotta said.