Decentralized Messaging App Yik Yak Announces Anonymous Photo Sharing While Collecting User Data
Photo sharing is one of the most often used tools of our society these days. Whether it’s through social media or just sharing pictures with friends and family, we love nothing more than sharing our memories with others. That being said, a lot of sensitive information is stored inside shares photos, which not everyone is aware of. Yik Yak may have the solution to that problem, albeit there are some rules to adhere to.
Yik Yak – Anonymous Photo Sharing But No Selfies Allowed
Yik Yak wants to help consumers create and find a live feed of what people in your proximity are saying. Sharing thoughts with people in the same location can be done securely and without exposing any of your personal information. In doing so, Yik Yak creates a whole new type of social media or public forum.
Similar to how Reddit operates, Yik Yak users can upvote content or discussions they like, and downvote things they do not like or find offensive. This principle is a great way to gauge potential interest in a certain discussion, and will give users direct feedback. Additionally, users can see what people are saying in other local communities, creating a sense of decentralization in the palm of your hand.
As you would come to expect, applications such as Yik Yak are obliged to collect certain information from their users. A user id is created for you, but no name or email address is required. Additional information collected may include geographical data, content and usage, telephone number, device ID, IP addresses, et cetera. All of this information may be distributed to third-party vendors and service providers.
It comes as a bit of a surprise then to find out Yik Yak has added a new feature to its mobile application. Every user can now share photos on the platform, yet certain things – such as selfies or inappropriate imagery – is not allowed. All photos will be manually reviewed before appearing on your Yik Yak feed.
Considering how Yik Yak touts itself as an anonymous messaging application, the sharing of photos is, by default, anonymous as well. However, given the amount of data the company collects on it users, there is a question mark as to whether or not Yik Yak offers any level of anonymity at this point.
Blockchain Technology A Better Alternative
There is one piece of technology that does not require personal information, nor will it broadcast your location, device ID or anything else. Bitcoin’s blockchain is more than just a financial ledger, as it can also be used to send files to other users on the network. No identification or verification is needed, as users have pseudonymous addresses at their disposaL
Additionally, Yik Yak wants to present itself as a decentralized application, yet still uses centralized servers to collect and store data. If the developers truly want to embrace decentralization to its full potential, blockchain technology for all of their services is a far better alternative.
What are your thoughts on the Yik Yak “anonymous” messaging app? Let us know in the comments below!
Images courtesy of Yik Yak