BBC Reports by 8JE
This widely popular but anonymous messaging app has been removed from Apple and Google stores after accusations that it has been facilitating bullying. But the owner and chief executive say that it wasn’t actually meant to be downloaded and used by younger teens, but this wasn’t made clear to many people.
Katrina Collins, the mother of a 13 year old girl, was appalled and disgusted to find out that her daughter was receiving cruel and hateful messages on this app. One message even said that they hope the young girl commits suicide, while others used incredibly foul language.
The app was supposed to be for people to comment honest feedback and say something nice anonymously, but most people did otherwise.
Collins’ daughter didn’t actually have the app downloaded herself - one of her friends did and showed the messages to her. Collins and her daughter live in Australia and created an online petition to take the app down, claiming that Sarahah encouraged bulling and self-harm. The petition gained nearly 470,000 supporters, leading to the app being taken down from Apple and Google app stores. Katrina Collins said to us: “Cyber bullies can hide behind a mask of anonymity online and do not need direct physical access to their victims to do unimaginable harm.”
This is not the first accusation of Sarahah being a horrible app because, since its release a year ago, it has had its fair share of ups and downs.
Many people are very concerned and worried that cyberbullying is becoming a much bigger problem – even bigger than physical bullying. Sarahah is believed to be one of the hundreds of apps that bullying takes place on and some people just aren’t convinced that enough is being done to prevent this, but Sarahah being dropped is thought to be one step closer to a world where cyberbullying doesn’t exist and is dealt with properly.