The Hottest Chat App for Teens Is … Google Docs

How a writing tool became the new default way to pass notes in class.

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Gaurabh Mathure
Reimagining the employee experience / Chief Product Officer at tydy.co

This reminds me of a set of simple collaborative game templates I had created in Google Docs when it first launched it's collaboration features and hosted on a website called "busyatwork(dot)co " - not live anymore. The idea was for people to use Google Docs to play games at work without it looking like they were on a gaming site, etc. (in my defense, I was 23 then :)).

The doc templates included games like chess, hangman, noughts and crosses, etc. and all you needed to do was launch it in your Google Doc, and share it with your friend/s to start playing.

Guess I should relaunch that project :)

Dr Gail Barnes
Partner at Personify LLC

One has to admire the ingenuity! "They’ll clone a teacher’s shared Google document, then chat in the comments, so it appears to the casual viewer that they’re just making notes on the lesson plan. If a teacher approaches to take a closer look, they can click the Resolve button, and the entire thread will disappear!"

John Gerzema
CEO at The Harris Poll

The modern Gen Z way to slip notes behind the teacher’s back. In actuality it aligns with new research on Gen Z and privacy, which is to say, “stay out of my life”.

Our new Axios Harris Poll study Gen Z study found 74% object to being targeted by companies in their social feed and 56% hack their analytics to throw adults off their scent. (aka personal data).

The hacks are ingenious like having a “Finsta” (second or even third fake Instagram account), or bouncing off social into smaller forums. As Facebook is now the least trustworthy brand by teens in our study, Google should take extra care in docs to protect their data. Then maybe a basic tool could be the next encrypted social network for youth.

Luis D Contreras
Manager at Strategy&

I love to see that kids these days still share notes during class like us back in the day, they just do it electronically via Google Docs, Haha!

Students always will find the way... always! 😆

Bobbi Rebell CFP®️
Host at Financial Grownup Podcast + Money in the Morning Podcast

And this is why I have made peace with the fact that they will always be one step ahead. “ Sometimes they’ll use the service’s live-chat function, which doesn’t open by default, and which many teachers don’t even know exists.”