Take Back the Yak on a different track with the new semester


Photo by Yue Yin/[email protected]

MUSG initiatives for Yik Yak are slowing down with the new semester.

After the “Take Back the Yak” initiative was launched in the fall, students and Marquette Student Government reacted to current usage of the app.

Yik Yak was cited as a “divisive force” on campus in the Climate Study. In response, MUSG launched the “Take Back the Yak” initiative in the fall. The initiative was meant to combat hateful and otherwise derogatory speech on the app.

Some students expressed their experiences and frustrations with Yik Yak.

“I haven’t used Yik Yak in a while,” said Jack Puhr, a sophomore in the College of Communication. “It’s always the same old stuff.”

Kaelyn Whiteside, a freshman in the College of Communication, said, “I had the app but deleted it because there was too much negativity.”

MUSG said on its website the purpose of the “Take Back the Yak” initiative is to keep the posts positive.

“Through this partnership, members of MUSG and other student organizations are collaborating with Yik Yak representatives to ensure the app continues to be a fun, positive and community-building outlet for students,” reads the website.

If students see hateful or offensive yaks they can report them to an email [email protected]. The email is run by a group of students from various MUSG organizations.

Emily Gorz, Communication Vice President, said the campaign has not stopped, but she has not looked at the email since returning from break.

Other students see benefits of using the app, but think it is decreasing in popularity. They see it as a good way to see what people on campus are talking about.

“I think it gauges interests of people,” said Zack Wiurschem, a sophomore in the College of Business Administration. “It’s a real way of engaging the world, but it has its trade-offs.”

Clare Danielson, a sophomore in the College of Arts & Sciences, said she uses the app because she finds it funny and entertaining.

“I go on Yik Yak, but I definitely use it less. It was a lot more popular last year” Danielson said.

Glibert Vaquero, a senior in the College of Communication and Yik Yak campus representative, said the usage has remained consistent, but Yik Yak is not focused on finding more users. He said people use the app as a resource to find out what is happening on campus.

“Instead of focusing on upping usage we are focusing on feedback” Vaquero said. “Our big goal is to know what the community wants.”