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‘Problem’ Twitter accounts allow for Drake students to bond

“Who is farting on the Dublin dance floor?”

“That one guy that answers every single question asked by the prof and with way more detail than is necessary”

“It is impossible to watch YouTube videos”

Many of you may recognize these as #drakeproblems. We’ve all got them, and a lot of us tweet about them — so much, in fact, that several handles have been dedicated to the epidemic of problems. These and other odd handles are staples for any Drake student on Twitter. So what makes them tick?

The handle @drakeproblem’s description reads “The ORIGINAL Drake Problem! I’ve got 99 Problems, Drake is one.” It’s nearing 700 followers and does its best to shed light on those pesky things that we all groan about on a day-to-day basis around campus, in particular the food and the wireless Internet.

The founder has requested that his name be left out of the article to add to the mystery of the account. He said that sometimes people recognize him on campus and say, “Hey, aren’t you the guy with that Twitter account?”

He often replies “Yeah, maybe, sometimes.”

Henceforth in this article, he will be referred to by the handle @drakeproblem. The handle @DrakeGrlProbs agrees. At first, she didn’t remain anonymous and only recently deleted all the personal information from the blog because people seemed to like the mystery of it, and it helps keep the account unbiased.

The @drakeproblem Twitter account started on Welcome Weekend this year, as @drakeproblem noticed the #drakeproblems hash tag showing up on his Twitter feed from people around campus. Eyeing the past success of @DrakeGrlProbs, he and a few friends were struck with the idea to put a face to these problems, and @drakeproblem was born. What started as a joke between friends quickly took off as he began tweeting more often.

“Now I’ve got ‘HootSuite’ set up to do scheduled tweets and everything,” @drakeproblem said. “A lot of those tweets are retweets of people around campus.”

@drakeproblem said that he intends to utilize the account in a future race for Student Senate. He described the account as a “gateway to see problems on campus,” problems Student Senate tries to solve. It’s not too surprising that the account seems to get more complaints sent its way than the @DrakeStuSenate account, which would actually be trying to solve those problems.

It’s easy to see how some of these problems could step on some toes, so @drakeproblem makes an effort to filter what the account tweets, since Twitter is available to any faction here on campus – Greek, independents, faculty and women’s studies students alike.

“I try not to criticize the school,” he said. “I try to comment on the community. It’s all in good fun. I just make sure it’s not going to blow up.”

The veteran @DrakeGrlProbs agreed, as she said that she is a proud member of the Greek community, but it doesn’t have a huge impact on her tweets.

“Sometimes my tweets refer to Greek life, and sometimes they don’t,” she said. “But they are not at all geared only to sorority women. I have worked hard to make it as relatable as possible.”

@DrakeGrlProbs started unassumingly as a class project, and she said that now she is surprised the accounts are such a success, and she is “psyched about all the followers”.

“Almost every tweet I write gets retweeted, which is incredible,” @DrakeGrlProbs said.

This leaves @DrakeProblems, the predecessor to @drakeproblem. Unfortunately, the account did not respond to a request for an interview. @drakeproblem says one of his goals is to determine who is behind the mimicking account.

These accounts make efforts to interact with other accounts on campus, creating a sort of odd Twitter network. One of the most often referenced is @DrakeSquirrel, which takes on the persona of one of the many squirrels we see around campus. Most recently, @DrakeSquirrel mused about the weather, saying that because of the lack of snow, he’s now “pulling dinner out of the mud.”


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