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Monday, December 11, 2023
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All the laundry machines are taken, a professor cancels class with a note on the door, the weather is taking a turn for the better, the line at Moe's is too long, whatever issue a student has can be expressed and shared with 140 characters or less.

The Twitter account @UBProblems was created in November as a place for students to voice their opinions about various problems and struggles amongst the UB community. With over 1,824 followers, the account is continually growing and becoming an outlet for many students to vent about what bothers them on campus.

The founder, who requested to remain anonymous, created this page after noticing that other universities had made similar accounts. There are many problems on campus and the founder thought that students would have a great time posting and complaining about whatever bothers them.

A major value is the anonymity of the page, according to the founder.

"I think that it's good that nobody knows what year, gender or grade I am because I want everyone to feel comfortable submitting no matter what," the founder said. "I think [the number of] the submissions would go down. It's cool that it's anonymous. Because it's not like I'm a person they are complaining to, I'm just an account."

Students are able to share what they are thinking using their Twitter accounts in less than 140 characters in the form of a tweet. Since the start of the account, there have been over 1,000 tweets highlighting different issues, complaints, and problems about campus.

Popular issues include the weather, drinking, sports, and weird events happening in class. Students are able to laugh or roll their eyes at the relatable subjects that are being posted.

Sometimes however, the messages can get offensive.

"The Asian jokes need to stop," the founder said. "People just love tweeting about the amount of Asians at UB and it's not nice."

The person in charge of picking which posts to re-tweet, tries not to allow those kinds of posts onto the page, but sometimes it slips by. There have been no complaints so far, but the founder never wants to be responsible for hurting someone.

Emily Alton, a freshman psychology major started following the account when it was first created and she is a frequent supplier of UBProblems. She posts about problems such as trying to get laundry done, standing in long lines at Pistachio's, and getting homework printed in Capen.

"I often post simply to express how I feel about the typical problems a UB student encounters each day," Alton said. "In a way, it makes the whole school feel like one because we're all posting about the same exact things and often times, we have the same feelings toward the topics posted. It shows that we all have at least one thing in common, and that's simply UB problems."

With this many students complaining about the same problems, Alton thinks that change will be promoted throughout the school. According to her, "the more and more we get the word out about the things we want changed, the more likely it is for them to be heard."

However, other students disagree.

"It just makes light of our problems we think we have or is just funny s*** in general," said Joseph Lavo, a graduate accounting student who has followed UBProblems since its creation in November."If UBProblems got serious about its tweets then I'd unfollow immediately. I follow because it's hilarious, not because I think any problems will actually get solved."

It was never intended for the account to be used as a platform for change around campus, but rather to unite UB students. If students want to see a change or a solution to the problems around campus they need to voice their opinions somewhere besides Twitter, according to the founder.

After the founders graduate, they hope to pass the Twitter account off to another student to run and maintain.

"I want to pass it off because I won't know what's going on," the founder said. "I'd rather someone else take it to keep the legend going because I won't be able to update. I wouldn't want to pretend like I'm still a student."

Alton and Lavo both plan on following the account after they graduate to keep an eye out for what is happening on campus and to see any changes that are going on.

"UBproblems is clever and can always get me laughing," Lavo said. "Even the other people who get retweeted are funny. Plus I'll never forget any of my UBProblems. I can only go to UB for so long and I've already been here for five years. That's a UB problem."




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