Why it’s popular: There’s something to be said about sharing one’s innermost thoughts without any repercussions, especially if they’re not socially acceptable. It’s cathartic. For those who simply choose to browse, Whisper can be amusing, heartbreaking, troubling, and comforting all at once.
What parents need to know:
- The scenarios can be hard to stomach. Reading that a teacher has fantasies about his or her students or that someone’s father is going to be released from jail and start a custody battle can weigh heavily on teens. Some confessions, however, are totally benign (and funny!).
- There is plenty of inappropriate content. All too often, whispers are sexual. Some use Whisper to solicit others for sex (using the app’s geo-location “nearby” feature). Strong language and drug and alcohol references also are prevalent (for example, “My wife and I were both high on our wedding day” and “I dropped acid with my mom once”).
- Whispers can go public. Entertainment news sites, such as BuzzFeed, are beginning to feature Whispers. The problem? When secrets — including the embellished or fake ones — become news, we may begin to find ourselves in tabloid territory.