DCU Clubs and Societies have advised any club’s or society’s official social media accounts against interacting with gossip accounts.
“It was noticed by Clubs and Socs and the SLC that Society Instagram accounts were interacting with gossip pages,” said a Society Life Committee (SLC) representative. “Pages such as these could be the platform in which certain subjects are discussed, subjects that people may find offensive or hurtful.”
Gossip accounts are run by a usually anonymous admin and gossip, secrets and confession are submitted anonymously, which are then published on the social media account. The SLC representative said that interaction with accounts like these could damage a club or society’s relationship with a student and can place the club, society and the college in a bad light.
“Gossip accounts such as these generally support humorous but negative discussion of certain people and topics that may be offensive or damaging,” they said. “Societies should be known as friendly, safe environments in which students can attend events and make friends without the pressure of sites like these being associated with societies.
“These sites are anonymous and societies’ ethos is to be a friendly face.”
These “gossip accounts” have gained popularity in recent years, for example the ‘DCU Tea’ account on Instagram or ‘DCU Confessions’ on Twitter. DCU tea recently lost popularity after it was revealed that the owner of the account was not a DCU student.
DCU Confessions has been inactive since April of 2020, when the admin chose to step back from the account due to bullying taking place on the page.
However, no student has yet come forward to Clubs and Socs with a complaint of a society social media page interacting with a gossip account.
Instagram account DCU Singles has over 1,400 followers and also operates on an anonymous basis. People contact the account, with their identity concealed, and describe someone in DCU they have a crush on.
The two people are then “set-up” with the help of followers or the account admin themselves.
DCU Singles does not consider themselves a “gossip account” but describes themselves as more of a “matchmaking account.”
“Well, I’ve been contacted by a few society accounts and have been posted on their stories,” the account owner said. “I don’t think there’s any harm in it, I just think it’s only a bit of fun.”
They said that there have been inappropriate comments made towards the account and students of DCU. “Some of them are just people having a laugh but there are some that are considered as cyber bullying. We take these messages very seriously.”
Any such messages are filtered out and deleted.
TinDCU is another matchmaking account that operates on the same basis. They have not had any incidents of bullying or inappropriate comments, according to the account owner.
“Well, I understand that in the context,” they said, about the advice from Clubs and Socs. “We don’t want any form of bullying happening either, but we monitor all submissions before they’re posted and we just hope that everybody can be nice and openly talk about how they fancy some hot DCU student.”
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