A new Web site is quickly becoming the new online home for anonymous gossip after the collapse of Juicy Campus due to the recent economic downturn.
The College Anonymous Confession Board gives students freedom to voice their opinions on topics ranging from sex and keg parties to campus life and politics, and now Temple students can gossip on the site.
The Web site, created by recent college grads Andrew Mann of John Hopkins University and Aaron Larner of Wesleyan University, serves as a platform for discussions that may be considered taboo by many.
The site is now run by Wesleyan freshman Peter Frank, who was given control of ACB when the two creators couldn’t find time to continue to run it.
In an e-mail, Frank said ACB differs from previous sites such as Juicy Campus because it provides a forum for real discussions rather than malicious topics.
“We have found that our students use our site to discuss topics that might be difficult to talk about in person,” he said, “as well as ask questions about classes or school events.”
In a press release, ACB said its philosophy is different from that of Juicy Campus, because the previous was a site that “fostered superficial interactions” which were “often derogatory and needlessly crude.”
Frank said there is always room for the occasional gossip post, but that his site will consistently host a higher level of operation.
Junior communications major Katherine McCombs said gossip sites ruin people’s reputations and she doesn’t use them.
“If you go on there you know you’re looking for trouble or for yourself,” McCombs said.
ACB users don’t have to login to make a post, but once a user is logged in, they can take advantage of additional features such as private messaging, identity swapping and marking private threads to view later.
Frank said he hopes users will get a more personal experience from the individual college boards.
Users to ACB can help the site maintain their images by getting involved in the moderation process. Users are given a few loose rules regarding libel and are able to report posts they don’t like.
f a student finds a statement they consider libelous, they may report it to the administrator who will remove the post if it violates the site’s terms of agreement. By doing this, the site has been able to avoid the vast number of libelous seen on other gossip sites.
But users beware – the site is not legally responsible for any libel posted on ACB because of Section 240 of the Communications Decency Act of 1996.
Juicy Campus was highly criticized for not censoring its content posted by users. The site was founded in August 2007, and, by October 2008, was spreading gossip to more than 500 colleges and universities. CEO Matt Investor said in a press release that the site ran dry after plummeting revenue from online advertisers and the “economic downturn.” The site was permanently shut-down Feb. 5.
Frank said in the wake of the recent Juicy Campus shut-down, he doesn’t fear that his site will do the same and that his site is getting about 500,000 impressions daily.
“Users should look for new features in the coming month,” Frank said. “We don’t want to release too many details, but we believe they will be exciting.”
Matthew D. Wargo can be reached at email@example.com.