A decade ago, Facebook digitized the college experience and expanded the way young adults communicated. This Facebook phenomenon has moved way beyond college kids into parents as well as grandparents, asserting their individuality, the college crowd moved into a variety of other social media networks and an ever expanding array of apps.
Originally, Facebook only made college students feel as if everyone else was having more fun than they were. Now senior citizens can scroll through their newsfeed and see how other grandmothers have cuter, more thoughtful and higher achieving grandchildren.
As grandmothers post shots of grandchildren, college students flee the old fogies social network.
According to attn..com here are some of the places the young adults are landing.
According to an article posted on September 17, 2015, Yik Yak is one of those places. This is an anonymous messaging system which enables users in a particular area to post anonymous messages onto a feed and fellow users can upvote, downvote, and reply.
The attn article reads in part:
College students have a variety of media platforms they use regularly.
While many love the anonymity Yik Yak presents, the app can also be a platform for harassment, put downs, and even fear. Last week, Florida Atlantic University student Emeil Stewart was kicked off campus after posting about “a threat to open fire on the campus breezeway, one of the main areas of campus where students and professors walk to get to their classes and restaurants.”
Upon noticing that the Yak was receiving a lot of attention, Stewart reached out to the police to explain that he’d merely heard someone else make that threat. While the university police chief clarified that this was an “18-year-old mistake” and “not a serious threat,” he’s still no longer a student at the campus.
Threats aside, Yik Yak is also a bullying hotspot. Earlier this year, the College of Idaho tried to ban Yik Yak after receiving several complaints about posts on the platform.
“If someone puts a racist epithet on a Latino’s door, or a black person’s door, there’s at least a potential evidence thread that can be investigated,” college president Marv Henberg said at the time. “Not with Yik Yak.”
Last year, Eastern Michigan University professor Margaret Crouch was horrified to learn that dozens of Yik Yak users had been brutally mocking her and two fellow female professors during a large lecture course.
“I have been defamed, my reputation besmirched. I have been sexually harassed and verbally abused,” she wrote to her union representative, as obtained by the New York Times. “I am about ready to hire a lawyer.”
Danielle Keats Citron, a University of Maryland law professor and the author of “Hate Crimes in Cyberspace,” told the Times that “Yik Yak is the Wild West of anonymous social apps.”
“It is being increasingly used by young people in a really intimidating and destructive way,” she said.
In addition to Yik Yak, many college students are on dating apps like Tinder. Nancy Jo Sales captured this reality earlier this summer in the Vanity Fair article “Tinder and the Dawn of the ‘Dating Apocalypse.’” Towards the end of the article, Sales visits the University of Delaware and is surprised that the young women she interviews are all on Tinder. The ease of Tinder has apparently reduced the incentive for college guys to go out and court women the old fashioned way.
“As they talk, most are on their phones,” Sales writes. “Some are checking Tinder. I ask them why they use Tinder on a college campus where presumably there’s an abundance of available guys. They say, ‘It’s easier.’ ‘And a lot of guys won’t talk to you if you’re not invited to their fraternity parties.’ ‘A lot of guys won’t talk to you, period.’ ‘They don’t have to.’ ‘Tinder has destroyed their game.’”