Anonymous social network Secret comes to UK


James Vincent
Wednesday 30 April 2014 14:08

Secret, an anonymous social network that allows its users to share gossip without names or profiles, is launching in the UK after making waves in America.

The mobile app was launched at the beginning of 2014 and quickly raised $8.6 million venture capital just 45 days after going public.

Thanks to its anonymity, Secret was quickly embraced in the cliquey social circles of Silicon Valley, where young coders and engineers have used it to share gossip about goings on in big tech firms. Earlier this month Nike denied rumours that surfaced on Secret that it was disbanding the team responsible for FuelBand, its fitness tracker. Weeks later the engineers were let go.

Tech magazine Wired has described the app as “a Burn Book written by the technology blogger set” but Secret claims that it has a broader appeal than just Silicon Valley, and points to its sharing mechanism that makes sure messages are of interest to users.

Unlike Whisper, another anonymous social network that was recently valued at $200 million, the app focuses on gossip amongst friends rather than strangers, only sharing messages with a users’ contact list.

However, every time a message is ‘liked’ by a user it’s shared with their contacts, meaning that particularly entertaining or juicy gossip can hop across the globe. Secret also likes to surface what it deems to be particularly good content from users.

Many have credited the app’s popularity with the growing dissatisfaction with social networks among teens. Photo sharing app Snapchat has previously epitomised this trend, allowing users to share self-deleting images, while even the likes of Facebook - previously the bastion of concrete identity online - has said its exploring anonymity features.

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