A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this app.
Ease of Play
Navigation and use are intuitive.
Violence & Scariness
No violent images or language seen during review process, except in context of recent news events, but users can post content without moderation.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
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Some use of expletives, but it's minimal. Generally the tone is friendly, with users reporting that "trolls" (those who use social media anonymously to bully, harass, or intentionally offend) are almost absent.
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Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
No content seen during review, but users can ask questions, discuss topics, or post pictures tied to drinking, drugs, and smoking.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Cloaq is a social network that allows users to create anonymous profiles and post text and images. You do not need to enter any personal information to create an account. Instead, you simply enter a password, and the app generates a username. Without email verification, developers can't contact users to address concerns, and it's not clear how much user information the developers can collect based on device information. Separate from the regular feed is SparQ, which creates private feeds based on email addresses, but posts will still be anonymous, and SparQ email addresses aren't linked to the main feed. There are some posts with references to sex and some swearing, such as "s--t." Also, a concerning post asking "Should I kill myself today?" was met with compassion but would still give parents pause. Though the review period didn't reveal a large amount of iffy content, the anonymity and lack of moderation can lead to questionable posts.
Is It Any Good?
CLOAQ works as advertised: Creating an ID is simple, the instructions are easy to follow, and, once you have a username, Cloaq mimics other social sites enough so kids will instantly know where to find what they're looking for. It's fairly basic, in terms of available features. As a platform it works fine, and similar to Blink! - Secret Messaging and Whisper - Share, Express, Meet, the clear intention is to allow people to say whatever they want. Unlike some other platforms, however, the community culture is largely tame and mostly positive. Regular users report that rather than being a haven for "trolls" and other people who use social media to be disruptive or hurtful, Cloaq members are open and nonthreatening. However, concerns lie in potential abuses, as anonymity often leads to negative behaviors.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.
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Our Editors Recommend
Safer Social Media and Messaging Apps for Kids
Social Networking for Teens
Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.See how we rate