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Content Any Way U Want It!

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September 29, 2023

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Phone app lets students be heard anonymously

Whisper, a smartphone application, is gaining popularity on college campuses by letting people be heard and not seen with the promise of anonymity.

When sophomore Tara Kanary heard about the Whisper app from a friend, who described it as an anonymous Twitter app, she thought it sounded interesting and downloaded it. What she found was a community of people sharing secrets that would otherwise go unheard.

“When I first got on there I thought the only point was to pick a picture to set as the background and put text to go with the picture, but it is much more,” Kanary said. “It lets people express what they really want to say under a name appointed to them.”

The Whisper app lets users share their thoughts, opinions, secrets and beliefs by posting a picture accompanied with text, all while remaining anonymous. The app has features such as messaging other users, replying and being able to “heart” a whisper, which is similar to liking a post on Facebook.

There are pages displaying popular, recent and nearby posts. Each whisper shows how far the user is and the nearby feature shows the distance in miles.

“I usually only read to nearby whispers because I find them more interesting,” Kanary said.

Sara Rose Attman, a public relations representative for the Whisper app, works closely with the founder and said their staff has a 24-hour monitoring service always looking to stop offensive spam.

Most of the users are college students, Attman said.

Many college campuses even have a student run Whisper Facebook page, she said.

“On a lot of platforms where your identity is available, there is pressure to always be perfect,” Attman said. “The reality in life is that there’s a lot we can’t say on a public forum that we want to get out.”

Senior Courtney Pearce downloaded the app after seeing advertisements on Facebook. Pearce said since she loved a similar app, Post-Secret, which was a popular outlet before smartphones and eventually became an app which was shut down due to abusive post, she thought she’d give Whisper a shot.

“People just put stupid stuff on there,” Pearce said. “I downloaded it after seeing it advertised on Facebook but realized that it was a waste of space on my phone.”

Not all mobile social networks are perfect. One of the benefits is people use Whisper as a way to reach out to others for help and support but some people truly use it to hide behind their problems, Kanary said. The downside for Kanary is the personal messaging feature.

“I don’t like not knowing who I’m talking to,” Kanary said. “I get the personal message if you want to help, but some people are just plain creepy.”

Attman said the app’s posts can range from something as small describing a beautiful day to a recent heartbreak.

“We want everyone to feel a part of the Whisper community,” Attman said.

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