Chances are that, if you have a Snapchat account, you know that things on the app can get a little racy. Such is the nature of Snapchat.
Original iterations of the app gave users the opportunity to share stories and images with very little fear they would be reproduced and redistributed (yeah, yeah, screenshotting exists, I know). In other words, if you don't expect to see something suspect on Snapchat at least once in a while, I really don't know what to tell you, fam. You're on the wrong app.
Not everyone believes that, however. In a class action lawsuit filed against Snapchat, an unnamed 14 year old California resident is suing the social media giant because, "Millions of parents in the United States today are unaware that Snapchat is curating and publishing this profoundly sexual and offensive content to their children,".
Um, kid. Millions of parents in the United States today are unaware of a lot of things.
Now, I don't want to diminish anyone's experience in this instance but couldn't he just, like, not have a Snapchat account?
Examples cited in the lawsuit include content with titles such as...
"10 Things He Thinks When He Can't Make You Orgasm"
"I Got High, Blown, and Robbed When I Was a Pizza Delivery Guy"
"23 Pictures That Are Too Real If You've Ever Had Sex with a Penis (the Buzzfeed post features Disney characters with pornographic captions)"
"What It Is Really Like to Let People Finger You in Public"
The case has been filed under something called The Communications Decency Act which Wikipedia QUITE LITERALLY refers to as "the Great Internet Sex Panic Of 1995". It's not even a modern sex panic. It's a sex panic from over 20 years ago.
If there is a case to be made in this instance, then surely there is a case against every book publisher that has ever published racy books, every magazine publisher that has ever had a "12 Ways To Please Your Man" article inside one of their publications, and every record label that has ever put out an album with swears.
Some1 is suing snapchat 4 putting a bread filter on Bc they are gluten free and the filter traumatizes them— (((Arianna Dines))) (@DINESAUR) July 6, 2016
gif via Marie Claire
Snapchat has responded to TMZ in an email saying: "Our Discover partners have editorial independence, which is something that we support."
The best solution to this issue is to allow users to have a hand in curating the type of editorial content that finds them on the discovery page. Allow an option where users can turn on and off a "safe guard" and require publishers to mark 18+ content as such.
As a 14 year old who is just getting into the world of social media, perhaps there is a degree of self censorship that must be implemented as well. Since you're old enough to file a lawsuit, I assume you're old enough to delete an app, right?
Downloading an app, getting offended, hiring a lawyer, and seeking others out to participate in your class action lawsuit is. a. bit. much. Snapchat is a business and they will behave as such. Lobbying for an abstract concept like "decency" when it's not mandatory that you use the application is a massive waste of time.