In an, unusual twist on the crowdsourcing concept, new “confession” groups have been popping up on Facebook.  Any secrets disclosed to the confession group are theoretically kept anonymous and are evaluated by page administrators before being shared on the Facebook pages for commenting. Content on these sites range from such trite contributions like, “I like drinking” because of its effects on the digestive system to information as disturbing as, “Sometimes I want to end it all.”  Due to the sensitive nature of the material on these pages, schools, police and other local officials have tried to have them shutdown.  But, the groups have proven difficult to shut down legally, and new ones pop up daily.

The popularity of these pages is alarming, but not because Millennials are carelessly broadcasting sensitive information that can be used against them to the whole world—that’s been going on for years, and is pretty much accepted as the new norm. What is most troubling is the fact that these groups appear to actually be serving a need. No one would contribute regularly unless sharing this information fulfilled a need within him or her. Perhaps they are sharing this information because they are lonely, and have no one they feel they can turn to.  Or it could be that they feel they cannot trust their friends with some of the more serious topic matters. It could be that they have decided that they are insignificant, and therefore no one cares enough to even notice their confessions. Or it could be that, in our reality television and celebrity obsessed culture; this is the closest that many ever come to their TMZ moment.

No matter the reason, the question remains: Are these pages something useful or do they exacerbate people’s problems and thereby take advantage of them?

What do you think? Are there positive aspects to these groups or do they only add up to trouble?