Friday, March 20, 2015

Riding Yik Yak

Riding Yik Yak


The Features of Yik Yak

When the two fraternity brothers of the Furman University, Tyler Droll & Brooks Buffington, decided to launch Yik Yak in 2013, they wanted to create a “local and anonymous Twitter”.  Twitter has been a kind of sensation due to its easy usage and instant massaging since 2006, its launch. The users of Twitter can follow their friends, families or celebrities and peep their lives and easily interact with them wherever they are. But what Tyler and Brooks focused on was somewhat more simple and regional. They used GPS technology to track down the location of the users. So a location-based, anonymous social media app came into the world. Users didn’t need to either create account or insert their private information besides the phone number which is the only requirement to get access to the world of Yik Yak. Without knowing who created the yak, the users could create and peek within a 1.5 mile radius of circle. It is just like you are in a herd of Yaks, listening to their mooing. But you don’t know where the mooing is coming from.    


Assessment as a Platform for Government or Non-profit Organization

              Is Yik Yak a good platform for government or non-profit organization? My answer is no. First of all, the main users are students. From the beginning, the main targets were college or university students. The app is used at almost 1,000 schools in US. Although it differs from where you use Yik Yak, the main herds are centered in college or university. Second, the information that you can post or collect from Yik Yak is quite limited. Unlike Twitter or Facebook, you can only post by texting. Also the platform does not allow the users to search the yak by keyword. Third, it is not necessary to mention that you may not know who is posting even though the public or public-related institution is using Yik Yak due to its anonymity.   

However, if you want to know what people near you care about and are interested in, there is nothing easier than to peek in your Yik Yak. So if you want to have fun or to seek trivial information, ride your yak. But be careful not to lose yourself in a herd. Yik Yak still has a long way to go.




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