Peoples Dirt, Now Terrorizing High Schoolers Everywhere
When Juicy Campus closed for business, many students, parents, and educators sighed with relief. We unfortunately had little to celebrate. As I noted then, Juicy Campus was but one player in a crowded line up of anonymous attack sites.
Yesterday’s Washington Post sadly underscored that point in its coverage of Peoples Dirt. The site has the dubious distinction of being one of the first to organize anonymous gossip by high schools. A review of its postings reveals that the site is a Juicy Campus for Juniors. And like its now-defunct older sibling, Peoples Dirt is filled with attacks on named individuals. As Brian Leiter has aptly described similar sites, it is a cyber cesspool of racist, sexist, and homophobic rants. Posters claim to have had sex with named female students. They disparage named girls’ body parts; they compile lists of the “ugliest middle school” girls. They discuss students’ sexuality in threatening ways. A posting under a male student’s name: “we know your g@y…just come out of the closet…and you should choke on a dick and die.”
Sadly, the era of the anonymous gossip site is far from over.