CollegeACB threads spawn gossip girls, boys

Elizabeth Brennan

After the shutting down of Juicy Campus, an anonymous posting and discussion board Web site that was popular among college students, administration members from colleges all across the nation were relieved. 

However, within the past year a new Web site called “College Anonymous Confession Board,” more commonly known as “CollegeACB,” has been set up.

Sites such as CollegeACB are stirring up chaos on numerous college campuses, including here at Villanova, due to the spread of rumors and inaccurate postings on the site itself.

“I find this Web site quite disturbing,” said Lael Hoegen, a freshman who has been on the site to get an idea of what it has to offer and what the controversy is about. 

Villanova’s page on College ACB has discussion topics ranging from “hottest freshman” all the way to “sorority rankings.”

 “Honestly, do people really want to degrade their own school?” Hoegen said. “Not all of the stuff on the site is bad, but a majority of it is just terrible. It’s trashy and puts a negative spotlight on Villanova.” 

Students are not the only members of the Villanova community who are aware of this gossip and rumor-spreading Web site. 

“Juicy Campus was hurtful to people, and I think it said some untrue things about some people,” said Kathy Byrnes, the associate vice president for Student Life. “If your name appeared on it, no good thing came out of it.” Byrnes and many faculty members are aware of the dangers that this new site, CollegeACB, can cause on campus and to the University. 

“Don’t post something that would hurt Villanova, because you are part of the Villanova community,” Byrnes said. “You are putting down the family which you are a part of.”

However, not all students feel this way about the site. 

Thousands of students continue either to read the discussion topics posted on the discussion boards or even actively participate. 

“I find it interesting to read because it tells you about all the gossip you probably wouldn’t have been able to hear otherwise,” said freshman Kelly Lynch, who checks the Web site for updates on a regular basis. “It’s completely anonymous so people can post anything they want without everyone knowing their identity.”

According to its Web site, CollegeACB considers itself a source that “helps build community and engenders the open exchange of information.” 

However, not everyone agrees that the site follows this mission statement. Instead of building a community, some say CollegeACB is breaking down the community aspect of the school by spreading untruths and hurting people. 

Postings on the site are completely anonymous and contain insults about the school, faculty members and specific students.

“Villanova is a school that prides itself on sportsmanship and of course athletics,”freshman JV Kracke said. “As an athlete, I think that this site is immoral and is disgraceful to what Villanova prides itself upon. People are looking at this site outside of the Villanova community and see the titles of these discussion boards. This site is giving an inaccurate deception of the Villanova I know.”

At this time Villanova has no plans to act against the gossip site. 

“We hope it is self-censored, and we hope it doesn’t rise to a level in which we would have to look into blocking it,” Byrnes said. “I hope that this doesn’t become a part of our campus culture.”