I cannot tell you how much I dislike Secret, the latest social iPhone app to “go viral” and spread through the handsets of early adopters across the country. In a nutshell, it’s anonymous subtweeting, but without Twitter (if you don’t understand what I mean by that, consider yourself lucky). The app was created by Square’s former technical lead David Byttow and others, and it allows iPhone owners to share text posts and images completely anonymously with their circle of friends and associates.
I hate it. And I can’t put it down.
When first installed, the app digs into the contacts you already have in your iPhone’s phonebook and links you to each and every one that also has Secret installed. There are no accounts, profiles or contact lists and you cannot “friend” other Secret users from within the app. Messages and photos you share are visible to everyone you know who also has Secret installed. If they “like” a post, it spreads and becomes visible to all of their contacts. And so on.
The anonymity is the allure, of course. You have no idea who posted each message. You can comment on Secret posts and engage in conversations beneath the main post, but you never know who you’re talking to (unless they spoil the fun and reveal themselves).
In the end, Secret is horribly stupid, utterly useless, and a tremendous waste of time.
I think I love it.
iPhone users can download the free Secret app from Apple’s iOS App Store here, but I strongly advise against it.
Updated to clarify David Byttow’s role at Square.