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Thursday, October 05, 2006

The Experience Project: Social Networking for Discreet People (and Stephen Colbert Fans)

The first thing I noticed about The Experience Project was its tag cloud with the words I Love Stephen Colbert being the largest tag. At that moment, I knew this site had to be worth a look around. The Experience Project bills itself as social networking for discreet people, meaning those who actively want to shelter their real identities online. In fact, on the registration page, there's this helpful function: Privacy is critical at The Experience Project, so if you tell us your face is in the picture, we will automatically attempt to change the image to make you unrecognizable. There's a flavor reminiscent of PostSecret about the Experience Project (I'll call it TEP from now on; it's a little long to type each time); getting things off your chest, sharing secrets, exposing yourself without exposing your true self to the world. However, whereas PostSecret allows only a unidirectional flow of information (secret sharer to world), TEP is more dynamic since it allows communities to be formed around topics of shared interest like all good social networking sites.

There's something about TEP whether it's the site design or the sun person logo that really appeals to me. I think it activates the avidly voyeuristic part of the mind that wants to know what the neighbors are up to.


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