MOULTON, Ala. (WHNT) -Moulton Middle School was on lockdown for a while Friday morning, the result of an anonymous post on a free smart phone app. The app is called Yik-Yak, and it’s causing problems for schools all across the country.
Officials searched the school early Friday morning but there was no bomb found and the lockdown was eventually lifted. It was a hoax, delivered anonymously by a free smart phone app called Yik-Yak.
The app is coming under fire in many areas because it affords the user complete anonyminity. You don’t need a username, or a profile, just a smartphone. School systems in many areas of the state including Mobile, Hartselle and now Moulton are having issues with it. In Morgan County, school officials blocked Yik-Yak as soon as they heard about it.
“So we got notified in January that it was out there,” Lee Willis, Deputy Superintendent of Morgan County Schools tells WHNT News 19. He added, “Some of the school in Birmingham had already confronted it, and we immediately blocked it from our internet and our network.”
One school official described it as a digital bathroom wall saying many of the comments are vicious and obviously hurtful. Others refer to it as a platform for cyberbullying.
Lawrence County school officials declined to speak on camera but tell us they are taking steps to ban the app from use in schools and say if that doesn’t work, they may ban cell phone use in schools altogether.
School officials say the bottom line is parents have simply got to monitor not only whats on their children’s computers but also whats on their cell phones. And if they find the application Yik-Yak, they say it should be removed immediately.
By the way, the Yik-Yak app has caused so many problems in Chicago public schools that the entire app has been taken down in that area.