The Snapchat app developed a bad reputation almost as soon as it launched. The app allows users to send picture or videos to friends who can then view the media messages once for a maximum of 10 seconds. After that, message disappears, usually never to be seen again.
Users can develop a list of friends either by adding the other person’s username directly or through their phone’s contact list.
As with many social media outlets, the app can be used for good and bad purposes. Because the pictures only last for a matter of seconds (unless the recipient chooses to take a screenshot) Snapchat became an outlet for sending nude pictures. Not everyone uses the app for that purpose, but the reputation spread quickly.
A Snapchat account has caused this phenomenon to hit rather close, if not on, Baylor campus. The account, baylor_snaps, serves as an unofficial account for the Baylor community to send pictures to, in hopes of making it on the account’s Snapstory. Snapstories are made by taking or uploading a picture via snapchat and selecting “add to my story.” The story can be watched repeatedly by anyone on the user’s friend list.
The concept is fun. Students can send in a picture of the sporting event they are at or take pictures that fellow Bears can relate to. The account is managed by an anonymous person that we can only assume is a Baylor student. Anyone (including people outside of Baylor) can add the account and send in whatever picture they want, in addition to being able to view the story.
The account manager then takes a screenshot of the snaps he or she receives and posts them to the Baylor_snaps Snapstory. Not all pictures make it on, as the manager selects what makes it on or not.
The selection process is where the problem lies. The Snapstory has a range of inappropriate images, ranging from pictures of illegal drugs to nudity. Apart from recognizing who people in the pictures are, there is no way of knowing who sent in the snap. Even then, it is clear that some people pictured were not aware of the picture being taken, like the people pictured passed out drunk on the floor.
Unless the events pictured are Baylor specific, it is difficult to tell if Baylor students were the ones to send in the snaps. It is not only possible, but easy for people not attending Baylor to send in pictures. Two weekends ago, the account crossed the line of nudity into actual pornographic snaps. Though faces could not be seen, the action was visible, and horribly inappropriate.
Having an account for Baylor students to send in pictures is not a bad thing. It is a fun way to interact within the community. However, the account either needs to clean up its act or be deleted. It reflects poorly on the university. Even if some of the people sending in pictures do not go to Baylor, their pictures are still put under the Baylor banner by being added to the story.
Considering anyone can add the account and view the story, it is not only inappropriate, but a terrible idea to send in pictures of anything you wouldn’t want your grandparents or professors to see. In the past week, the account has had little to no nudity, but illegal drugs continue to dominate the Snapstory.
Without better policing of the content, the account serves only to make Baylor students look trashy.
Clean it up or take it down.
It’s that simple.