Community Guardrails

Community Guardrails

👋 Introduction

Yik Yak is where communities are free to be authentic, equal, and empowered to connect with people nearby. So that all yakkers can enjoy the ride, we've set up some guardrails for your safety. Make sure to read our full Terms of Service and Privacy Policy as well, as our guardrails are a summary and not meant to supplant our full terms. Also, this is a public forum and your yaks are public. You are responsible for your yaks and their consequences and your interactions with other yakkers. We urge you to be cautious about your interactions.

We protect your privacy so that you can be authentic. While your personal privacy is always protected and only disclosed as required by and within the bounds of the law, boundaries on Yik Yak exist to ensure everyone feels welcomed and stays safe.

If you see a yak that doesn't vibe with the Community Guardrails, please immediately downvote and report it. Yaks that reach -5 total vote points are removed from Yik Yak. Yaks that are reported need to be reviewed by our team before they are removed (unless they reach -5 vote points). Through the upvote/downvote system, we rely on our community to help make Yik Yak a constructive venue for free and productive speech.

Bullying & Harassment

We’re here to share, laugh, learn, and connect. Never post anything that could be interpreted as bullying, harassment, abuse, defamation, targeted hate, public humiliation, etc... Don’t treat anyone like 💩.

🚫 Bullying & Harassing

Never post anything that could be interpreted as bullying, harassment, abuse, defamation, targeted hate, or public humiliation. Also… DO NOT:

  • Spread rumors or share gossip (and don’t ask or encourage others to do so)
  • Stalk or repeatedly bully or harass
  • Coordinate with others to team up on or target a specific individual or group
  • Use racial slurs or derogatory language
  • Body-shame
  • Sexually harass
  • Play harmful jokes or pranks (unless you call it out or put it in context)
  • Use excessive sarcasm (unless you call it out or put it in context)
  • Use unnecessarily obscene or vulgar language or emojis
  • Edit, manipulate or create fake content that detrimentally portrays others
  • Keep in mind this isn’t a full list!
🚫 Discrimination

Don’t treat others unfairly solely based on intrinsic characteristics, including:

  • Age
  • Caste
  • Disability
  • Ethnicity
  • Gender, gender identity, sex
  • Immigration status
  • National origin
  • Race
  • Religion
  • Veteran status
  • Victim status
  • Keep in mind this isn’t a full list!
🚫 Privacy Violations

Never post content that includes or identifies someone unless they’ve given you their consent. Also… DO NOT:

  • Share someone’s personal or private information without their consent, including:
    • Phone numbers
    • Emails
    • Social media handles
    • Personal or semi-personal websites
    • Social security numbers
    • Addresses
    • Financial information
    • Government-issued identification documents
    • License plate #’s (except when posting something helpful like amber alerts, headlights on, etc)
    • Keep in mind this isn’t a full list!
  • Post videos or content featuring of people in private places without their knowledge or consent
  • Post videos or content that clearly identifies/features people without their knowledge or consent
  • Dig up dirt on someone with malicious intent (no doxxing)
  • Don’t blackmail people… just don’t
💚 Reject Hate!
  • The emotional well-being and prevention of suicide and self-harm is the responsibility of the entire Yik Yak community. Reach out, encourage and support your fellow yakkers!
  • Stand up for each other, report, upvote, and downvote if you see bullying and harassment!
  • It’s okay to disagree and debate, but it’s not ok to bash, disrespect or trash someone.
💚 Always Ask Permission
  • Consent matters! You MUST have consent from anyone who is easily identified or directly identified in your post.
  • If someone depicted in a Yak asks you to remove it, please do!
💚 Public Figures vs. Private Individuals
  • Yik Yak differentiates between public figures and private individuals when it comes to moderation.
  • Private individuals receive more protection than public figures.
  • Public figures are also people, so don’t be excessively mean.
💚 Mental Health Resources
  • The emotional well-being and prevention of suicide and self-harm is the responsibility of the entire Yik Yak community. Reach out, encourage and support your fellow yakkers!
  • Encourage your fellow yakker to use our Mental Health Resources.
  • If you or someone you know need help immediately, text or call 988 to reach the national Suicide & Crisis Lifeline for free, confidential, 24/7 counseling from trained professionals. The 988 hotline is sort of like 911 for mental health crises.
  • If you believe someone is an imminent threat to themselves, first contact emergency personnel if possible and then report the yak.

Harm, Threats, & Violence

Celebrate and get to know your herd! There’s enough suffering and pain in the world, so don’t do things that spread harm, threaten others or demonstrate violence.

🚫 Self-Harm

Protect your herd! The emotional well-being and prevention of suicide and self-harm is the responsibility of the entire Yik Yak community. Reach out, encourage, and support your fellow yakker! Also… DO NOT:

  • Post any content that displays, promotes, incites, glorifies, or normalizes self-harm, including:
    • Self-injury
    • Suicide
    • Suicide ideation
    • Eating disorders
    • Keep in mind this isn’t a full list!
  • Post content that describes or displays how to self-harm
  • Utilize our Mental Health Resources or text or call 988 to reach the national Suicide & Crisis Lifeline for free, 24/7 counseling from trained professionals.
  • If you believe someone is an imminent threat to themselves, first contact emergency personnel and then report the yak.
🚫 Threats

Don’t post anything that could be interpreted as a threat. Threats can be digital, verbal, physical, or psychological in nature, and none of them are allowed. Also… DO NOT:

  • Post anything that intends to or promotes intimidation or fear
  • Make direct threats non-violent or violent in nature
  • Make vague, indirect threats non-violent or violent in nature
  • Extort any individual or group
  • Threaten communities, institutions, property, organizations, groups, or public gatherings
🚫 Violence & Graphic Content

Violent and graphic content is off limits. Never direct violence at anyone or anything, including individuals, groups of people, communities, institutions or organizations. Also… DO NOT:

  • Post anything that displays, promotes, incites, glorifies, or normalizes:
    • Physical, sexual, psychological, emotional, spiritual, or cultural violence
    • Verbal abuse, domestic abuse, or neglect
    • Animal cruelty (including posts about killing, hunting or harming endangered or protected species)
    • Property damage
    • Overly-graphic, violent, or gruesome content like real-world fights, car accidents, injuries, gore or torture
    • Terrorism
    • Violent ideations
💚 Pop-Culture References
  • If your comments are in reference to a video/e-game or TV and movie characters, and not real life, you need to make sure people understand that.
💚 Mental Health Resources
  • The emotional well-being and prevention of suicide and self-harm is the responsibility of the entire Yik Yak community. Reach out, encourage and support your fellow yakkers!
  • Encourage your fellow yakker to use our Mental Health Resources.
  • If you or someone you know need help immediately, text or call 988 to reach the national Suicide & Crisis Lifeline for free, confidential, 24/7 counseling from trained professionals. The 988 hotline is sort of like 911 for mental health crises.
  • If you believe someone is an imminent threat to themselves, first contact emergency personnel if possible and then report the yak.
💚 Yik Yak & Law Enforcement
  • You’ve been warned: if any laws are broken, content and user data may be shared with authorities.
  • Whether it’s real, manipulated, or digitally created, we take this stuff seriously. Expect real life consequences if you cross any dangerous lines.

Sexually Explicit Content

Nobody wants unnecessary sexual content on the feed (😗), so please don’t ruin the vibe with nasty stuff. Let’s create a safe and welcoming space for all yakkers!

🚫 Sexually Explicit Content
  • Don’t post content that explicitly or implicitly depicts or describes sexual activities, including (but not limited to) these things:
    • Penetrative, non-penetrative and oral sex
    • Sexual arousal, stimulation or masturbation
    • Sexual violence, rape, assault, non-consensual activities
    • Sexual fetishes
    • Beastiality or depictions of animals with human-like features
    • Butts, genitals, pubic regions or boobs for the purpose of sexual gratification
    • Human fluids like sperm, vaginal fluids, urine or 💩
    • Keep in mind this isn’t a full list!
  • No pornography! It doesn’t matter if it’s real, manipulated or digitally created, pornography of any kind and graphic content that suggests pornographic intent is not allowed.
🚫 Over-sexualized Content

Don’t over-sexualize stuff just for the sake of over-sexualizing stuff by needlessly posting sexual content that brings no value to anyone. Also… DO NOT:

  • Brag about or describe your own sexual endeavors
  • Post aggressive, offensive or discriminatory sexual language
  • Incite or encourage others to engage in aggressive, offensive or discriminatory ways
🚫 Solicitation of Sex & Sexortation

Yik Yak isn’t a hook-up or dating app, so please do not use it to for sexual endeavors. Also… DO NOT:

  • Prostitution and paid sexual services are 100% not allowed
  • Ask for sex, sexual favors, friends with benefits, hook-ups, dates, or nudes
  • Make unwanted advances like aggressively asking someone out
  • Comment on someone’s appearance in a cringey way
  • Sextort or post someone else’s intimate content
💚 Sex Isn’t Evil!
  • You’re allowed to talk about sex. We allow respectful, mutually-beneficial conversations about sex, sex education, sexual orientation, sexual experiences, and other educational topics.
💚 ”No” Means NO
  • Always honor the fact that “NO” means NO. Practice consent! All interactions should be appropriate, non-aggressive, and respectful.
  • Sexual activity without consent is rape or sexual assault. If someone has harmed you without your consent, reach out to local authorities. Check out Rainn.org, a leading organization in anti-sexual violence for more information.
💚 EDSA
  • We know some sensitive content is educational, documentary, scientific, or artistic in nature. These things will be moderated with less severity.
  • If something might be upsetting and/or is sensitive, make sure you call it out or label it, so our team and all your fellow yakkers know! Keep in mind there are people of different ages and backgrounds on the platform, and we want everyone to enjoy the platform equally.
💚 Yik Yak & Law Enforcement
  • You’ve been warned: if any laws are broken, content and user data may be shared with authorities.
  • Whether it’s real, manipulated, or digitally created, we take this stuff seriously. Expect real life consequences if you cross any dangerous lines.

Deception & Derailing Discussion

Communities are built on trust, so please don’t derail things for everyone by scamming, spamming, or deceiving your herd. Don’t compromise the authenticity and integrity of Yik Yak!

🚫 Impersonation

Impersonating other people or entities dismantles everyone’s trust in platform, and a lot of times it’s totally illegal. Also… DO NOT:

  • Pretend to be another person, friend, celebrity, public figure or official
  • Falsely claim to be an organization or institution (and definitely don’t claim you’re Yik Yak 👹)
  • Establish multiple accounts
🚫 Misinformation

Misinformation is more dangerous than it sounds. Do your best to never knowingly post content that’s not true or only partially true. Also… DO NOT:

  • Knowingly share things that are false
  • Make claims that inflame or incite emergencies or cause panic
  • Undermine elections or civic processes
  • Spread or perpetuate medical misinformation (especially related to Covid-19 and other public health crises)
  • Share conspiracies that harm others
  • Deny current or historic events
  • Play harmful pranks that spread misinformation or cause harm (pranks are okay as long as you clearly identify that it’s a prank).
  • Post deep fakes, digital forgeries or manipulated media with the intent to mislead, harm or harass others
🚫 Spam

Yik Yak isn’t an advertising platform or a place for pyramid schemes, scams, and junkmail. Also… DO NOT:

  • Post promotional or commercial spam
  • Post useless, repetitive messages that take up the entire feed (like yakking “hi” 304 times)
  • Scam people (including investment/financial scams, inauthentic identity scams, and products/rewards scams)
🚫 Intellectual Property Violations
  • Don’t outright steal, violate or infringe someone else’s copyrights, trademarks or other intellectual property rights
  • Posting these things is okay as long as you give credit to the owner/author
💚 Humor, Parody & Satire
  • Yik Yak is here for the laughs! Fan, comedy, and parody accounts are awesome, but please make sure it’s clear to others that your account isn’t the real deal.
💚 Report Intellectual Property Right Violations
  • Under certain circumstances, using copyrighted work is totally fine!
  • If you believe that there has been a copyright, trademark or intellectual property right infringement, please fill email us directly at hello@yikyak.com.

Illegal & Dangerous Activity

Illegal, dangerous or federally restricted stuff is just as illegal on Yik Yak as it is irl. Whether it’s online or in the world, you should avoid dangerous, illegal, and restricted stuff. It’s healthier for you and healthier for your community.

🚫 Illegal or Dangerous Substances & Goods

Illegal substances and goods (including federally regulated things) are not allowed on the platform (obviously). Never, ever display, promote, glorify, or normalize the use of illegal substances and goods. Also… DO NOT:

  • Solicit, buy, or sell illegal or federally regulated substances or goods, including:
    • Illegal drugs
    • Pharmaceutical drugs
    • Legal or illegal drugs obtained illegally
    • Guns, firearms and explosives
    • Alcohol
    • Keep in mind this isn’t a full list!>
  • Admit to the use of illegal substances or goods on the platform (duh)
🚫 Illegal or Restricted Activities

Illegal and criminal activity belongs to the authorities and needs to stay off of the platform. Also… DO NOT:

  • Encourage, promote, glorify, engage in or try to normalize illegal or dangerous activities, including (but not limited to):
    • Fraud
    • Counterfeit goods or documents
    • Human exploitation and trafficking
    • Phishing
    • Prostitution (fun fact: prostitution is illegal in all 50 states except for 10 counties in Nevada)
    • Theft
    • Vandalism
    • Keep in mind this isn’t a full list!
  • Admit to or display your involvement in criminal or illegal activities
  • Admit to or display someone else’s involvement in criminal or illegal activities
  • Promote or partake in gambling
  • Sell answers to exams or plagiarized papers
🚫 Dangerous Activities

Certain dangerous acts and challenges are out of hand. Keep in mind that there are younger users on the platform. Also… DO NOT:

  • Encourage or promote harmful challenges and activities, including (but not limited to):
    • Dangerous pranks
    • Professional and amateur stunts
    • Harmful challenges and games
    • Keep in mind this isn’t a full list!
💚 Regulated & Restricted Stuff
  • Alcohol. As we all know, individuals must be 21+ years old in order to consume alcohol. Don’t post about minors consuming alcohol or attempt to sell alcohol to minors.
  • Gambling & Lotteries. Don’t promote or partake in gambling or lotteries on the platform.
  • Marijuana. We know marijuana is only legal in some states, so when posting about it, please abide by your state’s regulations
💚 Yik Yak & Law Enforcement
  • You’ve been warned: if any laws are broken, content and user data will be shared with authorities.
  • Whether it’s real, manipulated, or digitally created, we take this stuff seriously. Expect real life consequences if you cross any dangerous lines.

Minor Safety

At Yik Yak, we are deeply committed to protecting minors. Any content containing and/or referencing minors is moderated with significantly greater caution and severity. In addition to all the guardrails, there are a few things we want to call out when it comes to keeping the kiddos safe.

🚫 Bullying & Harassment
  • Bullying and harassment of minors by adults or other minors is taken very seriously at Yik Yak.
  • If you need to report bullying or harassment, please email us directly at hello@yikyak.com.
🚫 Sexually Explicit Content

The sexual harassment or abuse of minors will be reported to authorities. In addition to all the other guardrails, some things that frequently involve minors:

  • Grooming
  • Child pornography or pornography with minors
  • Nudity
  • Sexual activity involving minor
  • Sexual abuse
  • Keep in mind this isn’t a full list!
🚫 Harm, Threats & Violence

Harm and abuse is something no person should have to face, especially minors. DO NOT:

  • Display, promote, glorify, or normalize abuse or harm that is physical or psychological in nature
  • Involve minors in activities that threaten physical or psychological safety
  • Displaying, promoting, glorifying, or normalizing violence or violent actions will get shut down. This includes:
    • Recruiting minors to violent organizations
    • Facilitating or recruiting minors to violent activities
    • Promoting the use of violence
🚫 Illegal & Dangerous Activity

Illegal is illegal, but illegal involving minors feels a little… extra illegal. DO NOT:

  • Post content displaying minors participating in illegal activity
  • Recruit minors to partake in illegal activity
  • Encourage or promote illegal activity to minors
  • Sell illegal substances to minors
💚 Report ANYTHING Suspicious!
  • If you witness any content that puts minors in harms way, please report immediately!

Other

We named all our categories before realizing we needed to include this stuff somewhere in our guardrails. So here it is: other things that are pretty important.

Account Specifics
  • If you’ve been banned or muted, don’t create multiple accounts in order to evade Yik Yak’s policy enforcement.
  • Do not impersonate people or organizations on Yik Yak in a way that might mislead, confuse or deceive other yakkers.
  • Yik Yak is here for the laughs! Fan, comedy and parody accounts are awesome, but please make sure it’s clear to others that your account isn’t the real deal.
  • Do not infringe on the publicity, privacy, copyright, trademark, or other intellectual property rights of others when selecting developing content.
🚫 Other Languages
  • As of now, all yaks must be in English. Our team’s currently only equipped to manage English-based content. We hope to support more languages in the future!
🚫 Platform Security

When you try to undermine or distort the app, it ruins the experience for everyone. Don’t be a selfish bum. Also… DO NOT:

  • Attempt to access, use, or tamper with Yik Yak’s systems or our partners’ systems
  • Test vulnerability by breaking or circumventing our security measures
  • Reverse engineer our software
  • Steal data, send viruses, overload, mail bomb, etc
  • Share links that send users to external websites or platforms featuring content that violates our Community Guardrails
  • Distort comments and feed algorithms
  • Organize mass upvoting, downvoting, or reporting
  • Report content for no good reason
💚 Educational, Documentary, Scientific, and Artistic (EDSA) Content Policy
  • We know some sensitive content is educational, documentary, scientific, or artistic in nature. These things will be moderated with less severity.
  • If something might be upsetting and/or is sensitive, make sure you call it out or label it, so our team and all your fellow yakkers know! Keep in mind there are people of different ages and backgrounds on the platform, and we want everyone to enjoy the platform equally.
💚 Mental Health Resources
  • The emotional well-being and prevention of suicide and self-harm is the responsibility of the entire Yik Yak community. Reach out, encourage and support your fellow yakkers!
  • Encourage your fellow yakker to use our Mental Health Resources.
  • If you or someone you know need help immediately, text or call 988 to reach the national Suicide & Crisis Lifeline for free, confidential, 24/7 counseling from trained professionals. The 988 hotline is sort of like 911 for mental health crises.
  • If you believe someone is an imminent threat to themselves, first contact emergency personnel if possible and then report the yak.
💚 Stay Safe Resources
  • We want each of our users to stay safe both on Yik Yak and in real life. Some of the topics and interaction types mentioned here are not pertinent to regular Yik Yak usage and are provided as a resource to help keep yakkers safe when they are away from the app.

Chats

For Users in Test Markets Only

You asked, and we heard your cry! We’re excited to introduce you to DMs! Now Yakkers will be able to connect on a more personal (but still anonymous) way! ALL our Community Guardrails apply to what you say in DMs, and violations do lead to consequences. Here are a few of the biggies:

🚫 This is not an underground market for shady shenanigans.

If it’s illegal or restricted irl, it’s illegal or restricted here too. Please don’t use DMs as a way to procure or sell illegal, restricted, or dangerous stuff like drugs, alcohol, weapons, and such.

🚫 This is Not a Dating App
  • We know you’ll meet people, just be safe and respect consent. Don’t be aggressive or pushy, and no paid sexual services of any kind.
  • If you’re in the market for a SO, we encourage you to check E-harmony (the OG of dating apps) or Coffee Meets Bagel (just because we like the name 🥯).
🚫 This is Not an E-Commerce Sorta Place

Please don’t use this feature to mass-spam individuals with promos, bogos, ads, or campaigns. And on the flip-side, don’t use it to shop and ask people for stuff (especially shady stuff).

💚 Use DMs for Good, Not Evil!

Use DMs to build community and connect on a deeper level. Don’t use the feature to harass people or treat someone like 💩.

Made with ❤️ in Nashville, TN.