Yik Yak is known widely by many college-age students as an anonymous social media platform where people within a five-mile radius can share their unfiltered thoughts. This comes with many pros and cons, and that’s what I’d like to discuss in this article.
Many positive things can be said about Yik Yak. First and foremost, it allows users to have their own voices, just like any other social media platform. You can post all about your everyday experiences, thoughts or feelings and share this content with other people around you. People can upvote, downvote or comment on your posts so that their opinions can also be heard.
Like other social media platforms, it gives users a sense of community. This was especially important in times of isolation, like the COVID-19 pandemic. Yik Yak is especially unique to other social media platforms in giving users a community because it specifically allows you to see the posts of other users within a five-mile radius to you, so you literally are seeing the posts of your community.
Yik Yak is also unique because your posts are anonymous. It allows people to speak freely amongst their peers without fear of judgement. Now, because people are able to upvote and downvote, there is potential for a post to be removed. Once your post scores a negative five, it is removed from the feed of surrounding users. Another way for posts to be removed is if they are reported; this feature was intended to keep things appropriate and respectful amongst users on the app.
With any positive comes a negative, so Yik Yak isn’t always the best platform. The most obvious negative aspect of Yik Yak is that because the users are all anonymous, aside from an emoji icon, people can say almost whatever they want. This often leads to a lot of negative or critical content being spread throughout the app. This can potentially be harmful for other users or the community in general.
One of the only other negative aspects of the app is the herd mentality tends to become a real issue. People tend to see one or two things that they find funny or entertaining in some way, and they run with it. They will repost their own version of other people’s original content one after another. This can be annoying for other users.
Aside from these two things, I think the only other negative thing about Yik Yak is that it’s a time waster. It’s very easy to get so wrapped up in scrolling through other people’s posts that time passes, and you don’t even notice at all. Now, this can be said for nearly all social media, but it should still be considered in this case.
Overall, Yik Yak can be a fun and positive environment for its users when it is being used appropriately; however, there are always going to be people who ruin things for everyone. Yik Yak is an interesting platform to use, but you do have to know that you won’t always see positive content. Remember, you can always downvote or report if things get too bad! Thanks for reading! :)