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New anonymous app skyrockets in popularity among students

An epidemic is defined as a widespread and quickly spreading factor. Staples has a new epidemic. It’s not the usual cases of the flu or senioritis.

It’s Yik Yak, an app where people can write anonymous posts that will be seen by all other people in the local radius.

The current app was first released last fall. However, its use among Westport students is relatively new, within the last 12 hours. Its commencement has come with explosive population growth in the Staples community.

Multiple Staples students were approached asking about this particular aspect of the app. Many declined to be interviewed.

Tess Shinbaum ’16, who experienced the outbreak of Yik Yak at Fairfield Warde High School last week, claims the app’s popularity is because “People like that they can say things they know they shouldn’t because there is no identity tied to it.”

Some Staples students agree. Alec Bird ‘16, an active user, described Yik Yak as “really dank.” However, he acknowledged the controversial anonymity of the app. “It can cause troubles within the grade because girls read stuff that is written about them and it’s bad.”

The fact that people post on Yik Yak without a name has resulted already in multiple incidents of cyberbullying.

So why would people turn to this new app to torment others? Is this the reason for Yik Yak’s sudden popularity?

Veronica Defelice ‘14 believes that many factors are responsible for the app’s sudden heavy presence.

“When something new that’s different comes out, there’s all this hype about it,” Defelice said. “There’s also the whole idea of looking at this stuff and not knowing who said it that makes it more fun to do.”

Kaela Fodor ‘16 on the other hand believes that bullying is the central reason for Yik Yak’s success at Staples.

“Kids are mean these days, and they just needed a new way to insult each other,” Fodor said.

 

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About the Contributors
Kacey Hertan, Business Manager
After reluctantly enrolling in Journalism as a freshman, Kacey Hertan ’16 knew that it would become a passion of hers, “as soon as I wrote my first article I knew Inklings was something that I wanted to be involved in,” Hertan said. This Massachusetts native has spent her three years in Inklings as a business manager, where she sells adds and manages the budget. In her free time, Kacey stays busy as the captain of the Diving team, which she started participating in freshman year after never being on a diving board before. Aside from being an impressive athlete, Hertan is the president of the Key Club, the oldest community service club at Staples. While she enjoys covering a variety of stories, her favorite to write is features. More specifically, the unique people that she has met writing her Humans of Staples piece has been her most rewarding Inklings experience.    
Justine Seligson, Photo Coordinator
Being a self-described political junkie and a teen travel writer, Justine Seligson '15 is not only, without a doubt,  a well rounded student and basically a mother's dream, but also a very unique addition to the staff. Seligson is extremely modest about her accomplishments, but it is very clear that her extensive journalistic experience outside of Inklings has largely influenced her presence on the paper. "I have a column on teen travel on my parent's website, which is called Farewell Travels," Seligson said. "It's a very different type of writing [than Inklings] but it's definitely helped me to grow as a journalist overall." Seligson goes on to describe the plethora of exquisite articles she has written for her column over the years. Seligson further explained how her experiences in traveling have shaped her journalistic presence in a large way. She explains why she is nonchalant about the amazing experiences she has had traveling the globe, explaining that it has always been a way of life for her and her family. "My family travels all the time," she said. "It's just part of our business." However, Seligson says that "...[she] would a much different writer if [she] hadn't traveled so much." She casually mentions how much of an impact a pre-college Kenyan writing program had on her, as what an honor it was to be featured in the National Geographic Student Edition. "It made me realize that even though journalism may supposedly be a dying business, there may be some hope for me to pursue my dream career," she said. With her in-depth knowledge of travel and politics, Seligson is sure to be an interesting voice on the paper this year. She hopes to improve her writing and photography even more this year, as well as to help other staff members to increase the quality of their own photographs.

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