During the past month, Facebook users on campus were politely bombarded by numerous Facebook pages that were created by and for Lawrence students. On some of these Facebook pages, Lawrentians are able to express their inner feelings, pleasant compliments and even little crushes to the Lawrence community while remaining anonymous. However, with all the different Facebook pages that currently exists, none has caused as much controversy as Lawrence University Secrets.
The facebook page emerged during winter break in response to the growing trend of each university having their own ‘Secrets’ page. Ever since its creation, many students have voiced their different views about LU-Secrets and their opinions all seem to go in two ways. Some students are annoyed by the site and believe that it contributes to the passive aggressiveness that already exists on campus while others do not really see the point in the existence but just love reading everyone’s secrets.
As the site continues to gain its prominence, the majority of them still have lingering questions about it, such as ‘what was the purpose of creating this site,’ ‘why should people trust the person who runs this site’ and most importantly, ‘who is behind LU-Secrets?’
Despite the numerous criticism about the site, the anonymous founder thought that this site might be a good way to address a problem that has been prevalent on the Lawrence campus for years.
“Throughout my time here, I’ve heard of many people complaining about the amount of tension/passive-aggressiveness on campus,” said the anonymous LU-Secrets creator. “So I thought, what better than to create a page where some of this angst can be let out? Why not create a page where people can participate in conversations anonymously.”
And that is exactly what happened. The page that started out as an innocent outlet became something more controversial than the LUS creator ever thought it would be. The LUS page began to captured the attention of Lawrence students after it continued the discussion that happened as a result of racist comments that was said in a fraternity’s party description.
“A lot of [the controversy] has been fueled by coincidence–with the Delt party and the fact that the Freshmen are reading West’s Race Matters this year,” said the LUS creator. “My stance? I think this conversation needs to move past Facebook. It needs to be addressed through an actual, physical conversation between students and faculty advisors.”
Although the creator encourages students’ comments, remarks and replies of heavy topics such as race, some students also believe that this page causes unnecessary drama and tension between the students. Many students posted negative comments about people who live right down the hall from them in their residence hall and about certain staff members in the Lawrence community. However, the LUS creator is made moves in order to stop that from continuing to happen by letting all of its friends know that even though it tries to post everything that is sent in, negative slurs and nonconstructive criticism will not be tolerated for this platform.
In addition to making this statement, the LUS creator also admitted to auditing posts that may need clarification or might be hurtful to certain students or groups.
“To add on to that, I encourage people to message me if they notice something out of line, as reading and auditing messages take up time and sometimes I am unable to catch hidden pricklies,” said the LUS creator.
In addition to some of the previous concerns that the students share, many of the students also question the credibility of the person who started the page, asking questions like ‘why should I put my trust in this page?’
“I feel like a lot of people think I sit behind a computer read , laugh and giggle at the secrets I receive,” said the LUS creator. “Big secret is, I don’t; nor do I have the time or energy for that.”
However, many students also believe that this person has ‘blackmailing’ power because this person knows almost everyone’s secret or at least one thing that pertains to almost everyone on campus.
“The bare truth. You shouldn’t [put your trust in me]. You just have to trust that I am trustworthy enough to keep your secrets mum–which, if you are indeed asking, I will,” said the LUS creator. “But I think people enjoy toying with that uncertainty. It’s the dice you choose to gamble, the game you choose to play.”
The LUS creator admits that he/she does not even remember some of the secrets that are sent in because so many secrets come in weekly that it’s hard to remember who submitted the secrets and even so, LUS creators says that they delete the secrets from their inbox after they are posted.
Even though students have their various opinions about Lawrence University Secrets, this facebook page has the entire campus talking about the page and its content and that is what makes it different from all the other facebook pages.
“LU Secrets isn’t a physical person, it is a page. It’s all for fun. One day, this page will die, be it when I graduated or when this page has losts it’s initial interest. And I am perfectly fine with that,” said the LUS creator. “I do agree that [this page] fuels the passive aggressiveness on campus as these secrets are being posted anonymously; never fully solving the passive-aggressive entity. But, I thikn that by allowing people to speak their mind, I might possibly be increasing the mental health of students on campus. There needs to be a platform; consequently so, better one than none.”