New app sparks concern over teen cyberbullying
WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. (CBS12) —
A popular new app called Sarahah is raising concerns among parents.
The app allows users to give honest feedback on their peers anonymously and is currently the most popular free download on Apple.
Darryl Wingate, whose daughter has been a victim of bullying, wasn’t happy to hear about Sarahah, which its users say could lead to teen cyberbullying.
The app was originally developed for employees to give anonymous feedback to their bosses, but its becoming more and more popular with teens.
One user wrote Sarahah “isn’t for the weak hearted,” and “negative messages aren’t confidence inspiring.”
Another commented the app is “just another way for people to talk behind your back.”
Wingate said he has talked with his daughter about Sarahah and cyberbullying in general and encourages other parents to do so too.
"Don't be afraid because this is your child," he said. "This is not somebody else on the street. This is your child and you got to deal with it."
CBS 12 reached out to Sarahah about their app and released this statement:
Unfortunately, the possibility of misuse of digital platforms is a challenge facing all these platforms including the major ones. Sarahah takes this issue very seriously and we have taken several measures to address this challenge and we will continue to enhance these measures.
Lowell Levine runs the Stop Bullying Now Foundation and is an advocate for many children across Florida who find themselves the target of a bully.
"You're seeing more and more of bullying online,” he said.
Levine also added that cyber bullying has become an increasing problem and Sarahah could lead to even more problems for teens.
"It is a very bad idea because the more access that children have to be able to contact other children anonymously, the worse it's going to be,” he said.
Lowell believes the best thing a parent can do for their children is to have an active role in their life and to make sure they don't confront their bully online or in person.
"They have to take a very assertive stance on this," he said. "You can't be laid back. You got to communicate with your child every single day."