New App May Brighten Your Day or Darken Your Mood

Staff Writers: Sarah Bohannon, Luci Dumas and Emily Gordon We recently heard about this new app called Brighten. This app was designed for people to leave, anonymous, kind, encouraging, comments to their peers, sounds all nice and sweet right? Wrong.

There are so many ways that this could go wrong. For example, it is anonymous, so people can leave whatever comment they want and no one will know it was from them. Naturally, in the world we live in, this leads to cyber-bullying.

If someone wanted to they could call someone something or make fun of them and the whole world could see it, but the offending person would be able to hide in anonymity.

We really do not understand why someone would create an app like that in the first place. We understand it is to “brighten your friends day”, but if you were really friends with them, couldn’t you just text them? Or, here’s an idea…call them. Who would not appreciate it if they got a random call from a friend and told you that you are pretty or something? Or perhaps, complement a girl in front of people *cough guys cough* and make them feel even more special.

Also, it just gets weird. The other day one friend was telling us that someone said she “smelled like cream cheese” and this anonymous person was attracted to the smell of cream cheese. Like, what the heck?! Who wouldn’t be creeped out if someone said that? Umm, are you okay? She has no idea if that was one of her friends playing a joke on her or some random person.

Apple views things a little differently than we do. Here is their description of the app, “Brighten is the first social app based on positivity in the easiest way to make your friends smile. Experts say that making other people happy actually boosts your mood, and small acts of kindness go along way these days.” While this may be true, but like a lot of things, people misuse it.

We think Apple could improve the app a lot just be making it un-anonymous. You create an account and people leave a nice comment, that might work a little better, but then again some people just don’t care at all and are going to say what they want when they want to. We are very curious to know how many friendships (mainly girls) have and will get destroyed over this. This whole epidemic was even mentioned in the news, at John Carrol High School, they gathered the whole student body and gave them a speech on how negative Brighten actually is.

Amy Owens voiced her opinion, “The app was beginning to have students partake in some negative activity that became fairly concerning to us” (She was talking about the parents and teachers of the students.) She also wrote a letter and it said, “…Harassing things are being said by our students about other students. Therefore, we are reaching out to our families to share what we have learned. We are asking that you please talk to your child about the danger of this app and other apps like Brighten.”

This just goes to show you that if you give anyone anything, they can and probably will, find a way to misuse it.

Issue 5 - brighten2

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