CALLING EVERYONE WHO GRADUATED FROM COLLEGE IN 2013!!! Yik yak is BACK. Back with this weird announcement by Kevin from the office, but back nonetheless.
Do people know what Yik Yak is?
There you go. I was talking about this with my desk neighbor Tommy Smokes, and he also loved this app during his freshman year of college (around 2014) before it disappeared. "I was actually addicted to Yikyak," he says. I believe it.
I hate referring to myself as a Millennial, especially now that the fucking loser Gen Z kids have given it such a negative connotation. But this is exactly why I hate it and what younger people have done to it - these kids don't understand old school bullying, so they think we're lame. Our parents were bullied, and they bullied us. We bullied each other to death because of it. Gen Z came through and yes, their brains are ruined by the internet and they're completely doomed as a generation, but they didn't have things like Yik yak. We don't (really) bully them. We're trying to stop the buck. I'd say theres a MUCH LARGER percentage of people who go out of their way to be nice on the internet now, compared to 2013ish. The newest children never had an app where, you knew for a fact all of your friends were on it, and they were openly talking shit about you. Spilling your secrets, using government names, anonymously.
"But Kelly, we deal with that all the time. Ever heard of finstas? Burners? Tiktok? WE KNOW BULLYING." - Gen Z's reading this, probably. I'm here to tell you that you don't understand. Let me paint a picture for you.
As a senior in college, you're at your PEAK of being an asshole. You think you're invincible, you know everything about everyone and you can't wait to leave school in the dust and start your new, adult life. Yikyak showed up - EVERYONE was on it. Whole sororities, whole fraternities, sports teams, everyone within 5 miles. You would join groups and just…literally talk shit. NOTHING nice was ever said. At first, everyone was hesitant to even go on it, or admit they were on it. Slowly things started coming out like, "[GIRLS NAME] cheats on her boyfriend every weekend." "[GUYS NAME] has a girlfriend in KD, but he was fucking Zetas all Greek Week." Standard airing out of cheating scandals. Then it got more personal, "[GIRLS NAME] is stealing from her friends." "[GIRLS NAME] is addicted to adderall." The icing on the cake was probably, "[GUYS NAME] did gay porn to pay for [GIRLS NAME] abortion," or maybe "[GUYS NAME] has given blowjobs to several of his fraternity brothers, his girlfriend has no idea."
The fights this caused!! The screaming!! What made it so insane was that you couldn't just say it was "trolls on the internet." It was your fucking FRIENDS! People within five miles!! We were living in the Scarlet Letter. Some of these things weren't true, but with a pool of people that was small in the grand scheme of things, everyone was walking around with shifty eyes. People took every post as 100% truth, no matter how ridiculous it sounded. You couldn't trust anyone for MONTHS. If your name ended up on Yikyak, you were labeled with whatever rumor accompanied you.
Just when you thought the coast was clear - YIKYAK (for those of us graduating in 2013) FOLLOWED YOU TO THE WORKPLACE! Luckily, I didn't have to deal with this. My office was too small at the time, we basically just talked shit to each other's faces. I had friends who worked at Goldman Sachs, Deutche Bank, Conde Nast AND Hearst who all ended up in awkward work conversations about things said on the app, some of them through HR. Interns, new employees, older employees - everyone was involved and putting livelihoods at risk.
Towards the end of its reign, Yikyak got very dark - Nazis, racists, the usual horrible vermin from the corners of the sludge had infiltrated our hot college/entry level workplace gossip. It was shut down.
I have no idea what will happen with it being back. People who don't know it are in for the RUDEST awakening. Although, I'm thinking now that maybe we've gained the knowledge on "how to ignore trolls," and we won't take it as seriously? Maybe thats the secret ingredient Gen Z will bring to the table, the ability to BLoCk ThE HaTeRs? All I know is that I've got butterflies in my stomach and I want NOTHING to do with it. I've racked up a lot of secrets since 2014, and I'd like them to stay in LOCKED FIRMLY in the metal box at the back of my brain.