Of Oxen and Birds: Is Yik Yak a useful new data source in the geosocial zoo or just another Twitter?


The landscape of social media applications is littered with novel approaches to using location information. The latest platform to emerge in this geosocial media realm is Yik Yak, an application that allows users to share geo-tagged, (currently) text-based, and most importantly, anonymous content. The fast adoption of this platform by college students as well as the recent availability of data offers a unique research opportunity. This work takes a first step in exploring this novel type of data through a range of textual, topical, and spatial data exploration methods. We are particularly interested in the question of whether Yik Yak differs from other geosocial data sources such as Twitter. Is it just another location-based social network or does it differ from existing social networks, establishing itself as a valuable resource for feature extraction?

In Proceedings of the 8th ACM SIGSPATIAL International Workshop on Location-Based Social Networks