The thrill and excitement of having one source be the keeper of all the secrets at your school or in your town, waiting to burst and spill all the tea, overrides the thought that really personal and damaging things could come out. We’ve seen ask.fm, After School, and of course-- Yik Yak. All of these websites/apps have given us the opportunity to post anonymous questions, gossip, or confessions. All three have come and gone for similar reasons. However, of the group, Yik Yak had the greatest rise and fall.
Yik Yak started out as an app that allowed you to write a short message and post it anonymously. It would be visible by anyone in your area who could comment and like/dislike what you posted. Posts varied from talk of parties happening, to someone discussing how alone and sad they felt. This filled the void of Gossip Girl for many, giving them juicy gossip and chatter from multiple users on the app. Yik Yak rose very quickly and soon, everyone had the little green icon with a furry yak on their phones. The more people who joined, the more tea that spilled and people felt like they couldn’t put the app down, as they would fall behind in the blink of an eye. As quickly as Yik Yak rose, it fell and here are some of the shortcomings that I believe prevented Yik Yak from becoming the Gossip Girl for the world.
With Gossip Girl, Dan always made sure the tips sent to him were true. He never wanted to taint his reputation by spreading false rumors. So, while there were many sources that contributed to the information he held, it was filtered. On Yik Yak, I could say anything and it would be out there in the open. False rumors can easily be spread which makes people lose interest and trust in the app. Users start to read a post and shrug it off as made up and ultimately see no real use for the app. Bye, bye Yik Yak, have fun in the trash.
Serena, Blair, Nate, Chuck, and various other characters were (are - let’s be honest GG never dies) icons. New Yorkers wanted nothing more than to hear about these characters lives and watch as their deep secrets were revealed to everyone. When it comes to Yik Yak, you might be reading juice on people you’ve never even met. So many of the posts that you scroll through will be irrelevant to you. Additionally, since there is no filter someone can post “hi” or “I ate a bagel for breakfast.” Great, super happy you ate a bagel, but the people want to hear something groundbreaking. A bagel for breakfast certainly is not groundbreaking. Gossip Girl would never have let a comment about a breakfast bagel make its way onto her blog. People got frustrated with so much “junk” making its way into their Yik Yak feeds and got rid of the app. Yik Yak, enjoy becoming as irrelevant as your user’s breakfast bagel.
Gossip Girl Charm
No matter how many lives GG ruined, Dan (a talented writer), always seemed to deliver the news with snarky charm that made it easy and enjoyable for followers to read. He spoke in riddles, keeping people on the edge of their seats waiting for GG to slowly dish out more information. Yik Yak simply fails to have the same well written posts. Nothing is enticing, just plainly stated. No charm...no snark... no fun. Must I say it again? Yik Yak, seeya never!
So clearly, Yik Yak never reached Gossip Girl’s sustainable success and they made it even worse when they drove their remaining followers away with their recent update. Posts are no longer anonymous and users have to set up profiles. What?! Yik Yak, you just destroyed yourself! You took away the one thing that was good about you...anonymous posting.
It’s honestly insulting to Gossip Girl to be compared to Yik Yak. While many anonymous posting apps keep coming out, I’m not sure anything will ever reach the full glory as the cruel and brilliant Gossip Girl.
Until next time.