College Gossip Crackdown: Chelsea Gorman Speaks Out

"For a while I didn't even want to go look, but then curiosity I guess, for lack of a better word, got ahold of me, and I went on and read what was posted, and I was absolutely disgusted," she said.

At first she was shocked that someone could be so ignorant as to blame a rape victim. Then she felt betrayed, knowing it must have been someone close to her because so few people knew. She said it felt almost like a second rape -- a total loss of control over her situation, just as the wounds were starting to heal.

The post started to spread, and soon the whole campus seemed to know about the girl who'd been raped, and the posting on Juicy Campus.

"That was probably the hardest part -- that people would come up and ask me about the post. In one case I came up to a group of people that I heard talking about the post, and they had forgotten whose name it was, but they were talking about the post that they had read on Juicy Campus, about somebody who had been raped," she said.

"It takes the control away again," said Chelsea. "It's my story to tell, and no one else has the right to tell it. And that something like this was considered gossip is disgusting."

Anonymous Hatred

Since Juicy Campus launched this fall at a smattering of campuses around the country, the Web site has given students an anonymous forum to say anything they want about anyone else, true or not, with little to no overview.

Want to find out who does drugs? Who's gay? Who has STDs? What about the most promiscuous girls? The prettiest? You can find all of this information and much more on

Names and sometimes phone numbers and addresses are posted on the site, which has now spread to about 60 schools around the country. It was an instant hit, jumping from a few thousand to more than 250,000 page views in a matter of months. Students across the country couldn't get enough of what was being written, and many were constantly checking to make sure their names didn't appear.

"People can say things about someone they don't know and there's nobody out there to stop them," said Rachel Wilkerson, a student at Michigan State University. "A lot of things I read on there are calling girls fat, or saying girls are sluts. Those are horrible things to say about women, and any Web site that promotes it and any person who would say those things, I just feel like is incredibly sexist and it just plays on girl's insecurities, and I thought we left that behind after high school graduation."

Dan Belzer, a graduating senior at Duke University, said, "This Web site is just about getting the worst things as possible on there just so that people can't help but look. Like a car accident, like a car accident Web site. No one would admit to reading Juicy Campus, but you knew everyone was reading it."

Duke was one of the first schools where the site launched in the fall, which is fitting because Matt Ivester, the founder of, is a 2005 Duke graduate.

After graduating from college and working for awhile in New York, Ivester said he wanted to create a Web site about "all the ridiculous things we did and the hilarious stories."

Yet for many, what's posted on Juicy Campus is far from hilarious, because anyone from anywhere in the world can log on and say whatever they want.

Getting 'Outed' on the Web

Ryan Sparrow, a senior at Duke who is openly gay, was upset to hear about gay students being outed on the site.

  • 1
  • |
  • 2
  • |
  • 3
  • |
  • 4
Join the Discussion
blog comments powered by Disqus
You Might Also Like...