Student Perspective: The “Fizz” App is a Major Problem


Image Courtesy of The Stanford Daily

By Anthony Curioso

In January, the infamous college social connection app, Fizz, debuted on the Catholic University (CUA) campus. Initially created by Stanford students in 2020 and branded as “Buzz,” Fizz has rapidly expanded over the years and is now present at more than two hundred colleges, where the app is marketed as a “private discussion and news feed for your school with a full suite of features such as direct messages, polls and images”. To ensure that only members of a particular campus community can access their school’s Fizz feed, Fizz requires users to verify their university email addresses.

My personal journey with the Fizz app was far from what I had expected. The initial excitement quickly gave way to disappointment and distress. Instead of the lighthearted and humorous content I had anticipated, I found myself and my friends subjected to a barrage of ad hominem attacks and mean-spirited posts within CUA’s Fizz community.

Over just a few weeks, the attacks became more numerous. They consisted of more severe accusations against either myself or others of my friends who were getting them, including allegations of Title IX violations which I would never dream of committing. I spoke to the Dean of Students (DOS) Office about my concerns, at which point they requested I take screenshots of the mean-spirited posts; when I returned a second time to DOS a week later with evidence of even more numerous and severe attacks, they recommended I delete Fizz in the interest of my mental health, and that I discuss my experiences on the app with friends and University staff members with whom I have built rapport.

The most awkward situation resulting from CUA students’ engagement with the Fizz app happened in the SGA Executive election on Tuesday, April 9, 2024. The night before the election, on April 8, someone alerted me that a fake poster was circulating on Fizz suggesting that I was the vice presidential candidate in a write-in campaign that was running against the legitimate ticket, Unite Catholic U

However, there were two slight problems with this: One, the alleged write-in ticket consisted of myself as Vice President and someone as President who would not have been eligible to hold that position due to going abroad next semester. Secondly, neither the other student depicted on the poster nor I attended the mandatory Executive Election Information Sessions, nor did we follow the prescribed procedures to declare our candidacy for the election according to SGA bylaws. 

Thankfully, the Unite Catholic U ticket prevailed in the April 9 election, avoiding what would have been an incredibly awkward situation for the Board of Elections, the current SGA Executive team, and the Unite Catholic U candidates.

The Fizz app has wreaked havoc on our campus, and the decision to allow the CUA community to have a server on the app was a grave error. It is unacceptable that Technology Services is unable to take action to ban the app on our campus, leaving students vulnerable to the brutal and rampant cyberbullying that occurs there.

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