Secret, Whisper and the Anonymous Troll

Venture capitalist Marc Andreessen is none too happy these days. As the New York Times reported yesterday in a front-page article, the inventor of the web browser and co-founder of Netscape is miffed at the latest Silicon Valley fad: Anonymous sniping from within the tech industry.

Several new anonymous social commenting apps and startups — with names like Secret and Whisper — are generating lots of buzz. As it turns out, these new social networks have provided “a rare, unvarnished look at the ambitions, disappointments, rivalries, jealousies and obsessions of the engineers and entrepreneurs” of Silicon Valley, the Times reported.

Andreessen’s complaints are valid. Combining the anonymity of comment trolling with social networking creates a greenhouse for sniping snarkiness. Anonymity may work well for whistleblowers, but in a small community of over-worked geeks, it might be creating some problems.

A debate on anonymous postings has long raged on the Internet. continues here

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