Parents' Ultimate Guide to Sarahah
With so many social networks to keep track of, it's not surprising if you haven't heard of Sarahah, which raises serious concerns about cyberbullying. So what is Sarahah exactly?
Sarahah lets you receive comments from friends and strangers anonymously. You can also comment on friends' and strangers' profiles without them knowing it's you. The app's name means "honesty," roughly, in Arabic, and was supposedly designed to allow employees to share feedback with each other anonymously.
Read Common Sense Media's full review of Sarahah, and help your kids use it safely -- if at all -- with answers to parents' most frequently asked questions below.
What is Sarahah?
How safe is Sarahah?
How does Sarahah work?
Is Sarahah appropriate for kids?
What age is Sarahah recommended for?
How are Sarahah and Snapchat related?
How can I protect my privacy on Sarahah?
What if my kid wants to use Sarahah?
Sarahah is an anonymous feedback platform that teens are using to pass anonymous digital notes to each other. You register and post a link on Snapchat, Instagram, Twitter, and more. When someone responds with feedback, you'll see their message.
If kids share their link to a public social media account, anyone can respond which could leave kids feeling vulnerable. Because it's anonymous, it's impossible to find out who sent a message, even if it's threatening.
Sarahah is very simple . Once you register with a username and password, you can share your profile link on any social platforms and ask that people use the link to give you feedback. People can type anything anonymously and it will be delivered to you. You can also give feedback on others.
Sarahah is easy to use, so kids won't have any trouble figuring out how to operate it. But because all comments are anonymous, it's very easy for people to say mean and hurtful things without any repercussions. For these reasons, Sarahah is not appropriate for kids.
Sarahah is not recommended for kids. Common Sense rates it for age 17 and up.
Snapchat users can post a Sarahah link to their accounts so that they can get feedback from their Snapchat friends. When Sarahah existed as an app, there was a more direct link between the two.
If kids decide to use Sarahah, they should consider only sharing their profile link with specific people, though they can't be sure that those people won't share the link with others.
If your kid wants to use Sarahah, talk with them about why. Discuss the downsides of anonymous apps, including how some people feel like they can be meaner behind a screen, especially when they won't face any repercussions. Talk about how they can participate in activities with their friends -- including using certain apps and games -- while still avoiding unnecessary drama. Also, come up with some strategies together for how to handle online insults or abuse.