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New Snapchat ‘Snap Map’ feature causes concern

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By Hassan Irshad


Last week, a new feature on Snapchat called the ‘Snap Map’ was introduced on its website as ‘a whole new way to explore the world’. The feature allows users to share their location on an interactive map, appearing as their Bitmoji avatar or, in the case that they have not created one, simply as a coloured silhouette.

The map location system gives the precise location of the user, down to their exact whereabouts on a street, and has  naturally raised some concerns among users and, in particular, their parents. As reported by the Independent, people are alarmed that the feature “could expose children to potential predators.”

However, as explained in a piece by Refinery29, ‘Ghost Mode’ is an option, whereby your location is not shown, and the user can also decide who is able to see their location via a setting on the app. Additionally, the prime feature of the map is not always the location of your friends. As Jack Brody, a product designer at Snap, explains in the article: “This map isn’t about where am I, it’s about where are my friends and what are they up to? It’s not about figuring out how to get to your destination, but about discovering where you want to go.”

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