Yik Yak is a mobile app that works like an anonymous version of Twitter. It allows others to post information and share current events. However, this app has recently been subject to controversy due to its potential to issue threats and cyberbully its users.
In order to address the concerns of harassment, the company decided to block all middle and high schools from using the app. It is believed that college students are mature enough to not promote pointless cyberbullying.
“They didn’t have the maturity… They’re just not psychologically developed enough to handle our app,” said cofounder and COO Brooks Buffington.
Now, Yik Yak has just raised $10 million in an attempt to become the “Twitter” of colleges. In a statement, Buffington said that “college kids really love our app because you have so many people in such a dense area that are going through the same experiences.”
The goal of this funding is to expand their market to more college campuses. “I think there will always be a few bad apples,” said Buffington. Although cyberbullying remains a risk within Yik Yak, Buffington believes the positive uses of Yik Yak at colleges outweighs these concerns.
With this recent funding, it seems that Yik Yak and other social media sites will not be slowing down. As the market grows and the availability of this app spreads, it is important to maintain precautions when using this app and others like it. Being aware of what is posted online will help reduce your vulnerability to cyberbullies.