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Students react to New York Magazine Yik Yak story

Students react to New York Magazine Yik Yak story

Student reaction was mixed to a Staples senior’s article published Monday about Yik Yak, the controversial app. The article was run online in New York Magazine and was widely distributed on Yahoo, Boing Boing and other outlets.

Will Haskell ’14 wrote “A Gossip App Brought My High School to a Halt”, summarizing the app’s impact and using direct quotes published on the forum anonymously.

While some students felt the article was constructive and useful, others felt that it amounted to more victimization of the original students targeted on Yik Yak.

“I thought it was really well written and accurately depicted the events that took place at Staples,” Ben Goldstein ’16 said.

Others, however, felt that it unnecessarily brought the hurtful posts back to the surface, causing more damage.

Grace Summerfield ’15 was particularly upset. “Inevitably when I was reading Will’s article and saw all the comments quoted, I was angrier than when I saw the Yik Yaks themselves,” she said. “I understand [that Haskell] needed proof, but it was out of hand, ridiculous, and heartless [to bring] a subject to light that was absolutely not needed to be brought up yet again.”

Haskell, when asked to comment on the reason for including the quotes in his piece, explained that the goal of his article was not to embarrass those mentioned. Instead, he wanted “people to be forced to look these posts in the eye” comparable to when a “dog chews something it shouldn’t have. You make them look at it so they can repent and regret.”

He felt that overall, the takeaway of his article should not be the specific posts, but for people to be aware of how cruel and damaging to the people and school climate the comments were. By bringing attention to this, he hopes to spread awareness to others.

“I tried to prevent future teenagers from suffering what Staples’ targets have endured.”

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Deanna Hartog, Sports Editor
Deanna Hartog ’16 is ready to bring her enthusiasm and energy from the stage to the newsroom. Hartog, one of the Sports Editors, has been acting since sixth grade and believes the skills she has acquired on stage will play a role in her work for Inklings. “Acting has allowed me to become a better speaker,” she said. “It really taught me that you need to think about what you say before you speak.” While Hartog is not a member of Staples Players, she has done numerous shows through community theaters and has performed at Curtain Call. She said the improvisation skills these shows have taught her will help her when she conducts interviews. “It’ll help with making people feel more comfortable,” she said. “Acting definitely helps with social skills.” This year Hartog hopes to become an involved editor, who can help her writers while managing her own articles. “I want to push myself to struggle so that I’ll work harder,” she said. “I took Intro [Journalism for Publication] last year and I just wanted to do more. I love it.”
Jane Levy, Editor-in-Chief
When she first joined Inklings her sophomore year, Jane Levy ’16 was scared to raise her hand in class. She lacked confidence in her voice and her skill.   But she stuck with it, and now, she can’t imagine what high school would be like without it. “Inklings defines my high school experience,” Levy, who is now the Editor-in-Chief of Inklings, said with a smile. Though she loves journalism, it’s the people in Inklings who make her experience meaningful. “Through Inklings I have made my best friends,” she said. “I would have missed out on so much had I not joined.” Being a part of Inklings has taught her that with freedom comes responsibility and that what you put in you get out. “The lessons I have learned in Inklings transcend into all aspects of my life,” she said. “I am so fortunate to be leading this class, club and community.”

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