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Giving up your data – Post secret

PostSecret – Hows it a secret if it’s on the web?

A place which gathers postcards, where people from around the world mail in, to communicate their deepest darkest secrets, to an audience they don’t know. The website PostSecret presents itself as a blog, which gives individuals a chance to convey their struggles with everyday, through text and images, becoming anonymous artists. In doing so, it serves to provide some form of catharsis for the person sharing, as these private memories and thoughts often have issues which make it difficult for them to be talked about in public.

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The black background site feels like an exhibition, featuring fragmented text and visuals which cover a range of issues. Some of them can be shocking, dealing with sexual taboos, personal failures, or criminal activity. Some of it are quite silly/tame, coming off more as a personal peeve. For example there was a post card where the write declared his/her/it’s hate for people with gross feet that wear open-toed shoes in public. This could be something relate-able to anyone who is reading,  someone that shares the same kind of annoyance, or the one having gross feet. Reading these card creates a kind of resonance or connect, which gives me a glimpse of the lives of others, and also reflecting on mine.

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However, there’s still that mental alarm that goes off when reading these (DONT BELIEVE EVERYTHING ON THE INTERNET). I do get a sense of disconnect from these submissions, which seem as if they’re well crafted pieces of art, which has since the site’s creation, spiraled into some kind of practice, becoming a place for collaborative pieces of art to happen.

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One thought on “Giving up your data – Post secret”

  1. Interesting point about the authenticity of PostSecret missives. This reflects on the larger issue of whether or not the data people give up is truthful, fabricated, performative, or perhaps just a joke. How do we trust online information if we can’t be sure of it’s source? How do we trust online communications if the identity is not established? Has it become too easy to reshape one’s identity, as we learned with the popular comment that even a dog can communicate via the Internet (if one wants to pose as such). So it seems there is a fine line between the confessional and the illusory via the Internet.

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