The app everyone is talking about. At least in India. At least the Indians who are on Twitter. You see where this is going?

I installed Secret exactly four days ago. I uninstalled the app one day ago and am waiting for their team to get back to me on how I can delete my account altogether.

If I had to describe my experience of being on Secret in one word, it would be : useless.

Anonymous feedback is not my thing. I don’t know who it’s coming from. There is no context that can be surmised.

I’m not sure what international experiences have been but my Indian experience has been mixed.

To be clear, most of what I could see – words about me – were nice. Some “friends”even defended vitriol-laced comments aimed at me. There were some negative and hateful comments as well. Both categories made me think how I was utilizing my time on the app. It was not making my life better in any way whatsoever except making me realize that I was wasting time. Time that I could have spent actually doing things with my hands : photography, editing, working on my magazine. Time that I could have spent speaking with people who care enough to give me useful feedback about my life and work.

Some of the nicer comments were on the lines of : “Naina is so nice.” “Naina is hot.” “Naina is reliable with her work.” etc.

Some of the not so nice comments used words and phrases like : snooty, pretentious, toots her own horn, takes credit for non-achievements, over priced, unreliable, ugly, etc.

These are opinions that don’t make my life better in any way. Neither the good ones nor the not-so-good ones.

The pattern that I sensed was that if the Secret shared was positive / supportive of something or someone, the comments would inevitably veer toward negativity. If the Secret shared originally was negative, however, it would initially garner additional negative comments and then spike towards positive or indifferent comments and some commentors would ask the OP to “Get a life!”

I had installed the app tentatively and cautiously because I’m well aware of what anonymity brings out. Hiding in front of my computer screen, I can use harsh words to judge someone especially when I know they can see what I’m writing but don’t know who is writing it.

The greatest test of character is what one would do if one knew one would never be found out.

I’m terrified to report that I too made caustic remarks about others behind the guise of anonymity on Secret. And it wasn’t even aimed at people I genuinely dislike in real life. I wrote comments in response to strangers’ sharing their secrets. In some cases I was so shocked by my own negativity that I went back, re-read what I had written and in horror, then, deleted those comments.

I couldn’t believe I could do something like this.

The few times I have been mean to people in real life, I have always regretted it. Wherever possible, I have apologized. But that is usually too little, too late.

I’m not sure what the Secret platform will evolve into, if anything, and I am not going to be on it to find out.

Three days of my life. Gone.

To those who wrote mean things about me, I understand you far better than you realize. There’s a little bit of mean in all of us. And sometimes it needs to get out lest we be mean to our own selves. Only difference is, I’m off the platform. I’ve got things to do.


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