Trending News Monday: Horrifying Headlines

This weekend’s headlines hint that Halloween must be approaching, because some of the news is absolutely horrifying. From scary clowns terrorizing a California town to the most recent photo hack, check out two of the creepiest stories trending on social media.

Clowning Around

In Wasco, California, clowns–the ones with the painted faces, red noses, wacky wigs and weird outfits–are popping up, some reportedly wielding weapons. Their purpose, supposedly to take photos outside local attractions.

In the past week, residents reported 20 clown sightings, leading to one arrest. The minor, who was not carrying any weapons but was chasing people, told authorities he was participating in an online prank; however, police have been unable to link photos currently online with the prank.

Since the story broke, several social media accounts, including a Twitter and Instagram, claim responsibility for the prank. Although police believe these are parody accounts created in the media storm.

While the pranks have thus far been harmless, Coulrophobia (the fear of clowns) plagues an estimated 12% of US adults. Add a machete or baseball bat to the makeup and wardrobe, and the terror seems pretty natural.

For more on this story, click here.

 

The Snappening

Snapchat, the popular photo sharing app, was the latest photo hacking victim. Although Snapchat’s servers were not hacked, another app which stores Snaps, Snapsaved, was, and 200,000 photos were consequently leaked on the Internet.

Snapchat, which received an abundance of negative PR over the weekend due to the hack, defended itself by turning to its Terms of Use (which explicitly says not to use apps such as Snapsaved) and warnings (“Please note: even though Snaps, Chats, and Stories are deleted from our servers after they expire, we cannot prevent recipient(s) from capturing and saving the message by taking a screenshot or using an image capture device”).

Earlier today, Snapsaved claimed responsibility in a Facebook post for the hack, seemingly clearing Snapchat.

While Snapchat is not at fault, the news did allow for other photo sharing apps, such as Yovo, to gain some publicity. Yovo ensures users can still share but not screenshot and save photos as they do in Snapchat as they blur the images.

Users worried that the Snappening included nudes of under-aged people (as nearly 50% of the users are 13 to 17-years-old); however, Redditors claim that most of the photos are not nudes and none of the nude photos are of minors (unlike the celebrity hack in August).
For more on The Snappening, click here.
Cover Photo Source: Heiko Barth
Cassandra is a Content Manager and Developer at SJG. She earned her BA from Fontbonne University in 2011. Outside the office, she enjoys an active, healthy and well-rounded lifestyle including reading, writing, running, golfing, watching films, listening to music, taking photographs, and consuming media and social media.