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Hail to the Snappers?

Whether you’re sitting in a boring crowded lecture, crammed onto an early Oxford Shuttle, or out with friends on a Thursday night, odds are you’ve snapped- on Snapchat, that is.  The temporary “selfie” app began taking the world by storm last year, and today many consider having it on their phone to be as necessary as texting, facebook, or other applications. Some Michigan students even prefer Snapchat to social networking sites, including sophomore Rachael Lacey who appreciates the fact that the amount of contacts people have on the app tend to be limited, as well as the overall brevity of the interactions.


“Snapchat is a fun way to share your everyday experiences with a smaller audience than Facebook or Twitter,” said Lacey. “It’s a great way to make people laugh without giving them embarrassing permanent evidence.”


While Snapchat was first portrayed in the media as a “safe sexting” app, many Michigan students who were surveyed said they mostly use Snapchat to send goofy selfies. Freshman Teddy Tran thinks the silly nature of Snapchat nowadays is what made it catch on so quickly, saying that he utilizes it because “Snapchat is just a fun way to mess around with friends, be it with ugly faces or just odd situations.”


Is Snapchat used more prevalently at Michigan that at other institutions? Some would argue yes, including freshman Elizabeth M. who thinks that “A lot more people use Snapchat at Michigan versus my high school.  Snapchat is fun, but I always feel a little bit awkward when people in front of me in lecture snapchat and I’m included in their snap. That’s always a little weird.”


In contrast, freshman Sam Lowenthal says he used Snapchat more in high school partially because he preferred the privacy of the app, but feels as though he has less privacy at college.


“My experience with snapchat at Michigan has been relatively subsided,” said Lowenthal, “Every time I want to snapchat, there’s something stopping me; big groups surrounding me, my roommate glancing across the room, or people peeking over my shoulder at the library, there’s always a reason not to Snapchat.”


Here is a breakdown of what 241 undergrads at UMich had to say about their Snapchat usage:

  • 43% use Snapchat to flirt
  • 86% send Snapchats to friends at Michigan
  • 90% send Snapchats to friends at other schools
  • 77% mostly send “selfies” on Snapchat
  • 16% mostly send Snapchats that are not of themselves
  • 67% make ugly faces in Snapchats
  • 18% avoid making unattractive faces in snapchats
  • 46% only send Snapchats to their close friends
  • 20% use the Snapchat Stories feature
  • 59% send Snapchats when they go out at night
  • 83% send Snapchats during the school day
  • 61% send Snapchats during class


Rebecca Lawson is the Managing Editor (former Editor in Chief) of Her Campus at the University of Michigan. She is a senior in the University of Michigan School of Information's new Bachelor of Science in Information program, and is also pursuing Michigan's Program in Entrepreneurship certificate. After graduation, she will be working as an Associate Consultant for Microsoft in the Seattle area. Follow her on Twitter and Instagram @abovethelawson! And be sure to follow our chapter's Twitter and Instagram @hercampusumich!
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