True Confessions of a Campus Cab Driver
Sarah McQueen
smcqu643@uwsp.edu

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“I stole the big picture of Robert Baldwin from the Baldwin Hall lobby.”

What would prompt a person to risk getting in trouble by announcing a secret like this for everyone to see?

Students are digging out their deepest secrets, hidden feelings and craziest college stories to post on the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point Confessions Facebook wall. Anyone can post anonymously, and anyone can comment on the posted confessions.

“Sometimes, I carry a textbook around in my backpack...I never use it. I just like to feel that I’m actually studying something here,” one anonymous user posted.

The creator of the page agreed to an interview but requested to remain anonymous. There are only 5 people who know who the creator is.

“During normal hours, I will receive about 50 – 75 confessions an hour,” the creator said. “There are so many confessions that come in during a day, and I have to sort through them all and figure out which ones to post and which ones not to. I just think it’s funny knowing some of the stuff that goes on at Taco Bell Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights.”

The page has gained massive attention across campus from students and faculty alike. The page was started in early February and already has over 3,500 “likes.” Stacey Gerken, a licensed psychologist and director of the counseling center on campus, gave her thoughts on the page.

“It is hard to tell what is fun and what is serious,” Gerben said. “I know that if we are talking about psychology of it—being about to say something publically and anonymously is a way to get something out. The danger, though, is if something is serious, putting it out and getting a negative reaction. This is a way that people can be vulnerable to harsh feedback.”

Some of the confessions do attract negative feedback, but many seem to be posted for the sheer entertainment value.

“When I walk to class with my headphones in, I feel like I’m living the music video for whatever song I am listening to,” posted one anonymous user.

A few of the posts take on a more serious note but still can come across as entertaining.

“We had a house party last year for Halloween, and some kid dressed as a penguin stole our fire extinguisher and sprayed it all throughout the house. I hate penguins,” wrote another anonymous poster.

Students and faculty are not the only ones paying attention to this page, though. The Stevens Point Police Department is aware of the page and is keeping an eye on the posts.

“It is something that we do know about and will look at from time to time, depending on the circumstances of the cases we’re involved in,” said Stevens Point police officer Michael Bink, who has personally used two of the posted “confessions” in attempt to locate suspects involved in thefts.

Bink stated that if they ever saw anything of a very serious nature, such as a confession of a felony, they would obtain a search warrant, get a subpoena for the information and try to trace the post back to the original IP address. Bink stated that although no posts have been used successfully to locate anyone, they do pay attention, especially to the ones that center around campus.

The creator of the page said the inspiration to start the confession page came from the UW-Madison confessions page.

“When I started the page, I didn’t really expect to get this big of a response, but now that it is this big, I am hoping that it can get it bigger,” the creator said. “Some of the confessions have surprised me. It’s definitely a shock seeing some of the stories, whether they be true or not, because you really don’t realize what goes on this campus until you hear it from people.”