The dos and don’ts of Yik Yak

Two students checking their phones for updates from the massively successful Yik Yak app.
(Photo credit: Isabel Gibson Penrose)

By Isabel Gibson Penrose, Web Editor

I couldn’t tell you exactly when it started, but for quite some time now Gettysburg students have been suffering from a serious Yik Yak addiction. Whether you’re one of the people who constantly complain about how it was better last year or someone up to their ears in Yakarma –(the score you get for posting Yaks, replies, and voting on other people’s Yaks and replies that gets higher as your actual karma gets lower) – few have escaped this monster app.

While Yik Yak has it’s own set of guidelines (don’t bully people by name, try to avoid obscenities, no fun, etc.) they’re pretty vague. Here are some dos and don’ts specifically for us in the Gettysburg area.

DO: Use Yik Yak as a platform for discussion of issues deeper than whether or not ATO is open. Politics, feminism, the queer community, and many other topics are totally viable for posting about, especially if you have legitimate questions. Obviously keep all questions and posts respectful – I shouldn’t have to say this but you’d be surprised what people think they can get away with.

DON’T: Keep posting about how much money your parents have! Guys, The Princeton Review ranked Gettysburg one of the worst colleges in the country for interaction between people of different classes. All this bickering about whose parents donated a library to get them in here and who believes they earned their place without money just proves them right! It’s alienating to people without money, it’s frustrating for the people with money that aren’t completely full of themselves, and it’s super boring. Nobody cares. Old money, new money, or no money, if you post about it on Yik Yak you are rich in my disdain.

DO: Report and down vote any and all posts that make you uncomfortable. One of the benefits of an anonymous app is no one will know who reported them, but they will get the message that no one is going to put up with their negative, hateful thoughts.

DON’T: Speaking of Greek life, stop posting about it. Enough “I didn’t get a bid to Fiji because…” enough hating on ADPi, enough calling people geeds. There is nothing that makes me regret coming to this school more than feeling like I’m drowning in a Greek ocean. Whether or not it is pro-Greek or anti-Greek is irrelevant. File these posts under “stuff that makes me roll my eyes so hard they almost got stuck in the back of my head” and eliminate them.

DO: Post countdowns to the weekend, Thanksgiving, Christmas, graduation, etc. Lots of people are struggling to make it until our next break and a reminder of how close we are can only be helpful.

DON’T: Repost yaks from other schools, Tumblr text posts, tweets, or generally unoriginal material. Yik Yak is a little tired as it is.

DO: Use Yik Yak to be funny! There are so many hilarious interactions worthy of being shared – think of the glory of ye olde Overheard at Gettysburg page minus the consequences of posting under your name – why waste posting about someone else who dropped their cup in Servo?

DON’T: Treat Yik Yak like Tinder. Yes, we get it, you’re lonely, you’re horny, you’re great at cuddling. You’re also anonymous. Nobody can help you here. And for the love of God do not post your phone number!

And finally, please…

DON’T: Take this article too seriously, or post about it. I’m very sensitive to anonymous criticism.

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Author: Isabel Gibson Penrose

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