Towson Behind Locked Phones

By Jasmine C. Dobbins

It’s almost next to impossible for at least one student on Towson’s campus to go a day without being personally offended by something someone said on Yik Yak, an app created for people to post their thoughts anonymously living in the same vicinity.

If one were to take a stroll around Towson’s campus, they would notice a variety of different people. Whether it is their sexuality, gender, race, culture, style, etc. There are an abundance of things that set the students at Towson apart from one another.

In fact, Towson encourages diversity among its students, having a multitude of culture clubs such as the Black Student Union, FCAT, German Club, etc. However, maybe Towson students find it more challenging to embrace people different from themselves than they are letting on. Yik Yak is a prime example of the discrimination that goes on behind the scenes at Towson.

“I see discriminatory comments being made on Yik Yak pretty much every day at night,” Erin Frias, 19, a sophomore at Towson said.

IMG_0064
A screenshot taken on Erin Frias’ phone from Yik Yak.

Whether it is hateful comments being made about a specific race, gender, sexuality, religion, etc. All of these issues have been addressed and criticized over the app and many heated debates have occurred because of this epidemic. However, the question as to whether or not this affects the students outside of the app in their day to day interactions is still up in the air.

“It doesn’t really make me look at anyone differently because you don’t know who is and who isn’t saying offensive things over the app, so you can’t really look at anyone different when you don’t even have proof they’re the ones responsible.” Christopher Cherrie, 19, a sophomore at Towson said.

And the question students who use this app may wonder is if, the people that claim to be their friends during the day anonymously post “yaks” criticizing something that is a part of their lifestyle at night?

“I think people are too scared to say these things in person so they resort to this anonymous app because yaks do not trace back to them,” Frias said.

Due to the fact that this app is not ran by Towson, students feel that there isn’t much administration can do to prevent this sort of issue from continuing to happen. However, they did have ideas of their own on how more students can be aware of the problem.

“Maybe the university could have an event/campaign raising awareness on the problem or they could have lectures talking about the impact negative yaks have on other students, and how students should properly handle a yak that may personally offend them,” Cherrie said.

 

 

 

 

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