Don’t Put Out the Fire- A Snapchat Streak Addiction

Kallie K
Kallie K
Dec 14, 2018 · 8 min read

Snapchat is a famous and iconic app for anyone of all ages to experience and talk to others by simply taking pictures of themselves that then disappear in seconds, so no one can ever see them again. For instance, instead of the good old messaging app, kids and even parents can message their peers on the app called through selfies or other sorts of pictures they decided to take at any given moment.

Then there’s the streaks. The good ole Snapchat streaks. Snapchat streaks are the lovely emoji images of the basic little fire emoji located next to your friends that you tend to Snapchat every day and have a continuous streak with that person until one does not reply. If you don’t reply at all for one day or not snap at all in one day you then lose that precious streak with the number next to it and the fire telling you how many consecutive days you’ve been talking to each other, or really not even talking, just sending selfies back and forth all day to just keep this lovely number and fire icon alive. For example, consider me, I use Snapchat every day and am indeed guilty of having several streaks with my friends just see that number there, and when we lose it, it’s like a relative died or something because it’s the complete end of the world to see that little number and fire emoji disappear next to your friend’s names after how many days of work you put into that precious streak!

The first thing I do right when I wake up is roll over to check my phone to see if people have snapchatted me or if I have the hourglass with some of my friends because I haven’t snapped them in a while. When that hourglass emoji pops up, it’s go time, you get very nervous or anxious, then know you better snap them right away otherwise you will lose that very precious streak number of yours and the little fire next to their name very soon! First thing I then do right when I go to bed, snap everyone on my list with streaks so I know I won’t lose those fires overnight. Why is this so important? Who knows. Society has placed these emojis on Snapchat to be very life involving and the people using Snapchat really relay on those little numbers with the fires and even the other emojis that are also located near their friend’s names too. Like the little faces placed next to their names saying whether that person is on your best friends list or not, or if one person is sneakily snapping your boyfriend/girlfriend because there’s a face for that too! Also, the iconic hearts next to your number one best friend list on Snapchat. The most important person usually that could be your significant other as that number one person shows up as a yellow heart, then red heart then the great 2 pink hearts that appear when you’ve been snapping every day for a very long time to keep those streaks and means that you both have the same number 1 best friend.

Snapchat Icon Meanings

Gold Star — someone has replayed your message (In the last 24 hours you can replay 1 direct snapchat)

Yellow Heart — You are #1 best friends with each other. You send the most snaps to this person, and they send the most snaps back to you

Red Heart — You have been #1 best friends with each other for two weeks straight

Pink Hearts — You have been #1 best friends with each other for two months straight! This take true dedication!

Baby — A new friend that you have just added

Face with Sunglasses — One of your best friends is one of their best friends. You send a lot of snaps to a person on their best friends list

Grimacing Face — Your #1 best friend is their #1 best friend. Same Best Friend!!

Smirking Face — You are one of their best friends… but they are not a best friends of yours! Lots of times they send a lot of snaps to you, but you don’t often respond.

Smiling Face — Another best friend of yours. You exchange a lot of snaps back and forth.

Fire — Snapstreak! You have snapped this person consecutively for a least 2 days

Hundred — 100 day snapstreak! This is the ultimate goal for many snapchat users!

Hourglass — Your snapstreak is about to end! A lot people will send random messages just to keep the streak alive

Birthday Cake — if your friend has the Birthday Party feature enabled in the settings, you will see when it is their birthday!

Daily Life

As many know, and experience themselves every day, social media is a huge part of everyone’s daily lives within society today. We check it 24/7 and feel the urge to constantly respond within seconds to messages or snapchats even to keep it going as you could say, American’s are actively addicted to social media today and every day. Phones these days, particularly Apple iPhones, are known as a huge status symbol within society and everyone feels the need to own one or have every social media possible to keep in touch with the world and everything going on around them every point of the day.

One night I decided to once again use social media to my power and take a poll on Instagram from all my followers based on the Snapchat app and all the streaks involved and how people think about the specifically. Some questions I had asked consisted of: if people had the snapchat app and used the app, whether they have streaks or not, how many streaks they have on average, how many snaps they at least send a day from less than 100 or more than 100 per day, and also whether or not they like to have these several streaks on the Snapchat app with their friends or peers or not.

More towards the end of the poll results has consisted of 99% of the people voting yes to using snapchat and a total of 1% for the amount of people that had said no they don’t use snapchat at all. About 85% of my followers had said that they have streaks and 15% had said they don’t use the streaks. Then there was a solid 43% of people that had voted that they do like the streaks and the concept of them and 57% of the people had said they don’t like them at all and would like to get rid of them. Overall, the results were very interesting but not very shocking to me as many people clearly don’t like the streaks and don’t know why they have them, just feel the need to have them for their own self need I suppose which is horrible because of society today and how popular Snapchat is to everyone around us.

Addiction Problems

Addiction can be anything that really lights up the reward system within the brain and make you all giddy inside. Snapchat is a big contribution to that reward system and how addiction is also a big part within the Snapchat society that we know today and the main idea of snapchatting streaks. Every teen around the world has at least one Snapchat streak with a friend or someone significant. Teens are addicted to this type of reward system because of that high number next to the emoji fire means something to them and is a big part of their lives now as they have to continue to Snapchat constantly every day to keep rewarding that light system within your brain.

Mental Health Relations

Mental health can also be a big problem when it comes to social media, especially the Snapchat app because of the significant streaks that everyone is very connected to and needing in their life to feel accomplished. There can be several negatives within the app of Snapchat and how popular it is today for anyone of all ages to be using on a daily basis. Many reasons can include the main part of streaks, but also can include the big part of having all the Snapchat filters and could cause self-esteem problems or even bring up more mental health scenarios because people need to feel as if they look better on camera rather than their actual face. For example, I have many friends that have to send me a snapchat with the dog face filter on because it can cover their facial parts and makes them look better with a smoother face and they feel the need to look better over the camera for a simple snapchat photo. Also, another example would include when people I am talking to think they need to just send pictures of the wall or whatever else is going on around them because they are self-conscious of their face to show their actual face.

I have been using Snapchat for a long time and have been addicted as it is a constant thing I am checking and very addicted to. About a year ago, I have always struggled with acne throughout my whole childhood and it has been a big downer on my life as I feel like everyone around me can just see that part of my face. So, taking that into the Snapchat app I was one of those people that was too afraid or insecure to take pictures of my face, so I was that one girl that took pictures of the wall or did half face selfies to my friends as I was too scared to send full face selfies as I knew their main focus would have been on my face full of acne. So, in experience I am one to also have mental health problems from Snapchat because of my low self-esteem I have had over my years and I know that many people are in the same boat as me and can relate to this and their insecurities.

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