The VT Confessions Facebook page becomes popular overnight

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

CollegiateTimes.com.

For the link to the Facebook Page, click here.

#508: “This is tough for me to say, but I’m gonna try to get it off my chest. Okay, here it goes. I’ve never seen an episode of Breaking Bad. There, I said it.”

From silly and lighthearted to serious and even depressing, the VT Confessions Facebook page has posted hundreds of anonymous confessions since its creation on Feb. 4 by a Virginia Tech student.

The almost-overnight success of the page is evident in its number of followers, 6,188, after only 23 days in existence.

According to the owner and creator of the page, a sophomore undecided business major, who prefers to remain anonymous, the first day the page only got 27 likes.

“I was pretty hyped about that,” he said. “The second day it got double that and it literally just doubled and doubled and before I knew it, it was tripling and quadrupling, now we’re sitting at 6,000 likes, so that’s pretty awesome.”

Five Virginia Tech students are helping to sort through the hundreds of confessions sent in to the Facebook page daily. Because there is no filtering system, the administrators comb through every single one.

“It’s very, very time-consuming,” said the creator. “I find myself reading the same stuff over and over.”

Due to the large number of confessions and repetitive content, many are never posted.

“We try to keep our content fresh as much as we can,” the creator said.

Carly Blake, a freshman political science major, has sent in two confessions and so far neither has appeared on the Facebook page.

“I wanted to see my confession on there just so I could ‘like’ it,” Blake said.

The Facebook page doesn’t just allow people to confess, it also allows people to comment, both negatively and positively. The creator sees this as a good thing.

“I think … people sometimes skip the confession itself and just go see the debate that’s going on the comments because sometimes it gets pretty hectic,” said the creator. “We’ve posted some controversial stuff… mainly to see how the student body reacts and the times that we’ve posted those, there’s a huge argument going on in the comments.”

Although the administrators of the page choose to post some controversial confessions, they are not in any way endorsing them.

“We’re just posting it because we want people’s feedback, because that’s what makes the confession,” the creator said.

Most see the comments posted by other students as constructive criticism.

“There’s a lot of internet trolls at Virginia Tech, me included, but a lot of them I can see being helpful,” Blake said. “I think a majority of us are nice people so the comments are usually pretty nice, but there’s some confessions that just ask to be ridiculed — so I do that.”

In general, the feedback the Facebook page has been getting is positive.

“I’ve gotten a lot of people saying ‘Oh yea, I can relate to that’ or ‘VT Confessions has made me feel better about my life,’ so I guess people just like that connection,” the creator said.

In fact, confession #280 said, “VT confessions has made me feel a … ton better about myself knowing a lot of people are in the same boat as me, can’t believe a page of regular people problems I’ve experienced myself could make me feel so good about life. Thank you!!”

Some question the credibility of the confessions, but the creator estimates 80 percent of the confessions posted to be truthful.

“Most of them I believe are real,” said the creator. “People go into detail … in these confessions so if someone’s going to sit there and make up that confession then they’ve got a lot of free time on their hands.”

The page’s relevance to students might be the most appealing factor.

“People spend hours and hours a day on Facebook,” said the creator. “People want to know what’s going on around campus or what their peers are doing.”

Blake thinks the popularity of the page comes from the fact that people love drama, but that they don’t want their name associated with it.

The ultimate goal of the VT Confessions Facebook page is to spread the idea to other colleges.

“I have friends at other schools that basically made similar pages based off my page for ODU and UVA, I’m just helping them with their pages right now,” the creator said.

As of right now, most colleges in Virginia have confessions pages of their own, but the administrators of VT Confessions plan to take their idea further.

“The goal is to launch a website with the same general concept that will be accessible for every college,” the creator said.

They are currently in the process of developing the site.

Update: The new site has been launched. To see it, click here.

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