Snapchat’s new feature lets you track your friends’ movements, and lets them track you, with just one tap.
Snapchat has enabled a feature that allows users to see the exact location of their snapchat friends, the time they were there and the speed of travel.
The update of the app began in mid June this year and has had many snapchat users and parents talking about it.
According to Snap Inc. there are 158 million people who use the snapchat app on a daily basis. The app is opened by each user an average of 18 times a day, with the majority of users being under 18 years of age.
More than 2.8 million snaps are created each day.
The new tracking feature has had positive and negative feedback.
Mother of four Leslie Maria says, although she can trust her kids using the app, it’s not always about them but the person on the other end.
“To some kids it may not mean anything because they themselves don’t have much interest in others, but what if someone on the other end has an interest in your kids whereabouts and they jump onto the app” she says.
The user’s location can automatically be updated on the map as soon as the Snapchat app is opened. Whether you’re at home, school or an event, the information can be shared to others if your location is on.
This is different to other social media platforms such as Facebook where it gives you the chance to tag your locations.
This is a worry to many, including Maria.
“Although the new app wouldn’t have bad intentions, there could be an increased risk for children to experience bullying and stalking by people they may or may not know” she says.
But what does the younger generation think on the new app?
Laura Clarke, 13 years old.
“It’s a good idea for parents to monitor where their kids are type thing. But
you should definitely have it set so that only a few people of your choice can see it,” she says.
Kgshak Akec, 21 years old.
“Like many new ‘features’ or ‘updates’ to digital apps, I was a bit apprehensive about everybody on snapchat knowing my whereabouts with a swipe of a finger. I guess in some ways it can be an invasion of privacy, even with the option to go on ‘ghost mode’. But, after some reflection, I’ve realised that it can be a helpful tool when its power is used responsibly, but dangerously lethal if it lands in the wrong hands,” she says.
Maysie Brehaut, 26 years old.
“I know a lot of young people who love this app whether it be for the right or wrong reasons I don’t know. I feel snapchat would’ve known that the majority of the users are underage teenagers, who may not always necessarily take things on the mature way so I don’t think it was one of the best ideas they’ve done. Kids need to be aware of the dangers, that showing your
location could cause, especially for the young ones who have random people on their snapchat just to get a huge number of friends on it,” she says.
To edit your location settings on snapchat, click on the ⚙️ button located on top-right corner of the main screen. This allows you to change who sees your location or you can also hide your location completely by going into ghost mode. 🙈