Truth App: Is Anonymous Texting Dangerous?
There’s a new app on the scene that allows you to message your phone contacts anonymously. “Truth – Just Say It” is aimed at friends being able to message each other anonymously with niceties about why they like each other and so on, but come on. Who’s actually going to use Truth this way?
The app is styled like many other messenger apps, but without your name. If your contacts also have the app, then one of a variety of owl icons will pop up alongside the message where your name would usually appear. For one person, you might pop up as “Bored Owl”, whereas for another person your alias may be “Cheery Owl”. If they don’t happen to have the app installed (which is extremely likely) then it’ll pop up as an unknown number on their normal text inbox. This app professes to let you “message your friends truthfully” and goes on to display a variety of loving and cutesy comments which have been anonymously sent between contacts (such as “the truth is you have a really cute smile!”). Which is all well and good, but then why would you need to anonymously tell your friends what you think of them – especially if it’s pleasant?
I suppose that if you’re really worried about letting a secret crush know that you think they have nice eyes or something, then this app is supposed to help here. Yes, it’s all very fuzzy and warm in its approach, and is supposedly meant purely for sending compliments and love poetry – but there is a dark side to Truth.
Huffy Owl is not pleased.
Oh yes. Removing your identity completely means that you’re less likely to hold back on your feelings – so if you’ve fallen out with someone that you happen to have in your phone book then you can let rip with less concern towards them knowing it’s you (obviously, if you say something too personal then they’re probably going to catch on to who it is). It also potentially gives individuals the ability to be really creepy if they want to be, meaning all sorts of texts could be sent – think about an obsessive ex, for example. It’s nice for Truth to include the option to “block” a user on here, but a lot of people receiving these anonymous texts probably won’t even have the app, therefore removing that option. Not only that, but you don’t necessarily have to have their number for them to message you, so it could come from someone that you gave your number to years ago. Scary.
If you do also happen to have the app, however, then you can see exactly who else on your contact list has it. Which means that “Smitten Owl”, who has been saying how bad your hair always looks, is straight away narrowed down to (less than) a handful of people. However, I think this app would just generally make a lot of people really, really paranoid about their contacts.
I tried Truth – just to see if it could be used successfully for the above purposes – but, as it is, the app isn’t really all that concerning.
The problem that I was faced with is that Truth doesn’t seem to have a very high success rate when it comes to sending messages. I asked a few friends that I sent messages to (none had the app installed) if they’d received any strange texts, and most replied negative. Considering this app is supposed to give you “fast and real-time messaging”, I’d say it fails on this account, so don’t worry too much about being bombarded with anonymous messages.
I did discover that sending messages between people who have the app is fast and reliable, but when you know who sent them (through telling them specifically to install it) then it’s a bit pointless. You may as well just message them normally.
In conception, this app means well… but in actuality, it’s probably for people who either can’t tell people how they feel to their face, or those who are really, really creepy. However, the app just isn’t reliable enough to provide the right anonymous texting experience that I’m sure so many stalkers crave, so it’s unlikely to become a mainstream thing. And, I have to say, thank God for that.
What do you think of Truth? Let us know in the comments below.