Sarahah, the controversial app ‘of honesty’ that has surpassed WhatsApp
Earlier this year, Saudi programmer Zain Alabdin Tawfiq came up with an idea for a work-based application that would serve businesses and companies to know their employees’ feedback honestly. Yes, honestly, because the key to the app would be that employees could send anonymous messages, and in that anonymity, they could be shielded to send an honest message. Said and done, in February 2017 was premiered on Android and iOS Sarahah, an app that this week is in the mouth of the entire network as the latest digital phenomenon.
Sarahah, the controversial app ‘of honesty’
As usual in this sector, from time to time comes an application that devastates in a very short time and is forgotten again with the same speed. In this case the figures and the rise of Sarahah have been impressive, because having been released only 5 months ago, it managed to shoot down in Africa and the Middle East, and later the app obtained last July a total of 3.88 million Downloads only in the United States, which translates to being downloaded more times than Facebook Messenger, Netflix and even the all-powerful WhatsApp and capturing the first sales position in the Apple App Store in 30 countries. Everything under an ultra simple graphic aspect and a team of only three people developing it.
How does it work? You download the app, you install it, you make an account and now anyone you give the link to your account can send an anonymous message, a comment. And there is the simple and practical logic to empower you to “help you discover your strengths and areas in which to improve by receiving honest feedback from your employees and friends in a private way.”
So on paper sounds good while being in a work environment and constructive. But the problem is that the use of Sarahah, which in Arabic means ‘Honesty’, has resulted in something entirely different outside the scope for which it was created. But before, how does an app so small and focused on a particular group has achieved such success? What factor has contributed to the success of insane you have had in 5 months? The answer is Snapchat, one of the most popular social networks and that allows anyone with an account in Sarahah to share it through their Snapchat among all their contacts.
Goodbye Honesty, Hi Racism, and Harassment
Imagine this: Given the incredible bad milk, goofy and malleolism that exists in sites such as Twitter, a social network in which bullying and bullying is a reality and its creators confess so overwhelmed that it is a fertilised field for trolls, think about what It would happen if you could send anonymous messages, with no possibility of discovering who sent it and without being able to answer you . This is what happens in Sarahah, which does not allow conversations and therefore anyone who receives the messages can only read and annoy them with what they say.
With the impulse of Snapchat, Sarahah has become an ideal app to send messages of harassment, to threaten, to insult, etc., and everything from the anonymity and the inability to answer , reason why the complaints to the app have not been Made wait and can be read already in sites like the App Store. Sarahah is basically a huge breeding ground for anonymous bullying and the umpteenth app that is born as something positive and just turned into something destructive, just like the extension of Facebook Honesty Box anonymous messages, or the website Askfm that your Authors try to clean up after cases of suicides.
Recent expiration date
Websites like the Financial Times point to good things like the app does not allow photos or messages to be sent publicly, and also that you can block offensive users through your IP even if they are not registered. Its creator, Tawfiq, makes clear that even a single case of harassment is intolerable and are implementing measures to ‘clean’ your app, which include the aforementioned IP block or a message filter, in order to create a positive space And secure their future.
Although the reality is that many young people’s obsession with what they will say, whether those around them or simply their followers of their YouTube channels, Instagram, etc., see them as good people, has contributed to the success of Sarahah No doubt, but this is the double-edged sword, since sharing the account with millions of users you do not know Snapchat has given wings to be used in the worst possible way. The question now is whether Zain and his followers will be able to troll their app, how many weeks / months Sarahah has left before going out of style and falling anonymously, which is often the case with these apps that go up like foam In very little time for being the trending and falling just as quickly into oblivion.