Social networking can sometimes add to stress – like when you see the Jones’ new duds or happy they are when you’re feeling a bit low. However, there is a new social network that was created to do the opposite of that. It is called Koko, and the premise of how it works is pretty simple. It provides users with an outside perspective on their troubling situations. Just post your problem on the app, and other users can give you their perspectives. You pick a category that is the area of concern like school or work, and then write the worst case scenario of the outcome of your problem. The app is designed for cognitive behavioral therapy, which reconditions people thinking of catastrophic results to think more realistically. You might think that such an app would just be full of trolls, but it’s not, since you get to upvote the people who give you the most useful feedback and advice.
The people who offer feedback have no training in cognitive behavioral therapy, but the app offers helpful prompts to encourage people to come up with useful feedback. An example would be “What’s a more optimistic take on this situation?”
Rob Morris, one of the co-founders of Koko, based the app on the development process. If a developer has a problem with their code, they can log into a service like Stack Overflow and get advice on their problem. The reason services like that exist is that it is a 2 way street. Today, you have a problem and need someone’s help, and tomorrow it might be them. It’s like having a friend and therapist living right inside your phone!
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