Originally, I came up with the idea of the Unbottle app after brainstorming ideas for a service that can help others. While some apps may provide similar functionality to Unbottle, these are often inaccessible to younger audiences. As a teenager, I don’t know of any apps that my peers use to talk about mental health and personal issues. For this reason, I started the Unbottle project – an app for iOS and Android that helps you to cope with personal problems.
What Unbottle does
At its core, the Unbottle app has a simple user interface consisting of 5 tabs.
- Home: displays categories like Mental Health, Abuse, Sexual Assault and Drugs & Alcohol. This provides a quick and easy way to get to the support the user requires.
- Discussions: displays community-based discussions that any user can participate in. The user can either ask a question or answer one.
- Unbottle: allows the user to talk to verified human by starting a discussion or to an AI bot which provides the necessary support, composed of affiliate content and YouTube videos.
- Remedies: suggests problems based on the user’s past activity and then shows solutions to these issues using videos and affiliate content. This tab also provides crisis support.
- Journal: allows the user to track daily feelings, then checks trends and will suggest a method of support if something has been consistently wrong.
Privacy & security
Unbottle's goal, as with any community, is to provide a safe place to share your thoughts. For this reason, Unbottle will be constructed from the ground up to prioritise privacy. For example, upon the first launch, the app will generate an account that is assigned on a per-device basis, which is then tied to an anonymous profile identifiable only by a User Tag – making names and email addresses unnecessary. The only personal information required from the user is their date of birth, which is used to filter content. Anyone over the age of 12 is eligible for an Unbottle account.
We also need to take some safety precautions to protect the most vulnerable. There are no unmoderated direct messaging functions, which will help to prevent everything from spam to grooming. Before posting, there is a 10-second countdown timer to allow the user to think before they send their post. Additionally, images and videos cannot be uploaded, which will prevent the sharing of inappropriate content. A specially curated collection of images and GIFs will be provided as a substitute for user-generated content. Of course, daily moderation will be required to keep the platform as clean and safe as possible.
If you’re interested in contributing to the app or donating any amount of money to help get the project going, I’d be incredibly grateful. If you'd like to learn more about Unbottle, you can check out the Unbottle website. Be sure to follow us on social media for more updates!