New AI chatbot invades privacy

Snapchats latest feature, My AI, creeps out students and seems to be an invasion of privacy.

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Snapchat’s latest feature, My AI, creeps out students and seems to be an invasion of privacy.

An overbearing and creepy chatbot is the latest feature added to Snapchat. This feature cannot be removed from the very top of your Snapchat feed without the purchase of Snapchat’s $2.50 monthly charge. Serving as your own personal assistant, the Snapchat chatbot seems innocent, but when put to more personal use, it oversteps boundaries. 

Originally created in February 2023, the new AI was an experimental feature only accessible to Snapchat+ users. Eventually, it became open to all Snapchat users only two months later in April. Those with Snapchat see their privacy boundaries slowly start to crumble, as the AI has the capabilities of doing invasive things such as entering a group chat. By simply typing “@Myai” or its personally customized name, your AI will instantly appear in any group chat, responding to the questions you and your friends may ask. Coming off at first as a useful tool to help quickly resolve any debates the group may be having, sometimes it seems that the AI overstays its welcome, bringing a sense of discomfort to users.

“Personally, I like My AI since it helps me with a lot of the quick information I need,” sophomore Emma Sceppaguercio said. “But I find it extremely creepy when it stays in my friend’s group chat for way too long after its use is over and [when it] asks me personal questions.” 

This new AI also threatens one of the most popular features Snapchat has to offer: “ghost mode.” This makes your location invisible to all other users. However, by enabling your location to the Snapchat app itself, it becomes one of the most dangerous features that your AI has access to because it can give you recommendations for activities, restaurants and events based off of your location despite activating “ghost mode.” Even when you think your AI can’t access your location, it knows your every step. With every useful feature that this technology can offer to you, it also becomes more of an imposition. 

“My AI told me where I lived when I had already turned my location off for it,” sophomore Sasha Levine said. “I feel like it knows where I am at all times, when that was the reason why I didn’t want it on.”

Not only being a problem to the users specifically, the AI feature could also be an affecting factor to schools’ curriculum and education across the country. Instantly answering any specific school questions asked, it can impact a student’s understanding of the education being provided to them by the schools. 

With easy access, this new tool can be an aid to help students with almost anything they ask. Snapchat’s new feature will make it difficult for school districts to avoid the matter of students cheating on their tests and essays. This addition that was supposed to be a positive and helpful feature, has turned into something that causes harm and could potentially result damage a  student’s reputation.