Breanna Daugherty is a sophomore photojournalism major and writes ‘In BRiEf’ for The Daily News. Her views do not necessarily agree with those of the newspaper or The Daily. Write to Breanna at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Bouncing from its anonymous counterpart Yik Yak, the Unseen app focuses on images rather than words. Unlike Yik Yak, Unseen has yet to take off at Ball State.
Unseen was developed in May 2014 at Texas A&M University and expanded country-wide to other campuses.
It has many similarities to Yik Yak — it’s anonymous, it’s for a college audience, users upvote and downvote posts and users can “peek” on other college campuses.
However, the app is virtually unseen at Ball State. I can currently open up Unseen and see a post from Valentine’s Day. When I looked at Texas A&M, there are many posts, but there is no time stamp to know when it was posted.
Michael Schramm, co-founder of the app, thinks having an anonymous social networking site is liberating.
While liberating, most posts I have looked at on Texas A&M consist of the use of marijuana, alcohol, sexual suggestions and occasionally animals.
But how much you reveal about yourself is your choice.
“A big part of the reason we created Unseen was so that people could share images and say what’s on their mind without having to worry about people judging them,” Schramm said in Middle Tennessee State University's newspaper Sidelines.
The moderators, a staff of about four people, are left to not judge the users.
“Want to get feedback about how your butt looks today? Go for it. Want to brag about how much weed you smoke? Go for it. Allowing for content like this lets users know that when they have a deeper issue to talk about one day — say, body image issues or drug addiction — they can do that on Unseen,” said Schramm in MTSU Sidelines.
Many of those posts have happened, but I haven’t seen anything about deeper issues, to be honest.
The way users can talk to each other is on a post, like comments. In Instagram, you have to tag people to get their attention on a photo; you do the same thing on posts on Unseen, which is a way to generate conversation.
Tagging is fairly simple in the comments section. You simply tap on the comment you want to reply to and it adds a name to them to notify them that you commented back.
But the app also allows you to start direct messages with people, just like Instagram, Twitter and Facebook.
Despite what the posts might be, there are some decent things you can do on your posts. You can post just text, text on a photo, put filters and do other edits on photos and do short video clips called flick, a recent update for the app.
Overall, the app is useless at Ball State because no one has it.
Unseen is just that: unseen. There are very few users, considering the first post I see when I open the app is from Valentine’s Day.
Honestly, I don’t see a purpose for this app, especially at Ball State. While the concept isn’t bad, it just doesn’t work for Ball State.
The design is clunky, but simple. It’s bland and not appealing.
It’s no Yik Yak and no Instagram.
The only chance this app has at being decent is if it goes from unseen to seen.