PostSecret iPhone app removed due to "malicious" users

An app that could be used by people to anonymously post secrets seemed like a good idea at the time for the creators of the iPhone app PostSecret. However, the actions of a tiny percentage of the app's users have now caused the app's creators to voluntarily pull the software program from Apple's App Store. Mashable reports that the $1.99 PostSecret app was first released in September.

On Sunday, a post on the PostSecret blog by one of the app's creators Frank Warren announced that the app had now been pulled from the App Store. Warren said that while the vast majority of the users of PostSecret used the app the way its creators had intended in the first place, he added: "Unfortunately, the scale of secrets was so large that even 1 (percent) of bad content was overwhelming for our dedicated team of volunteer moderators who worked 24 hours a day 7 days a week removing content that was not just pornographic but also gruesome and at times threatening."

That kind of content also caused users to complain to not just the company but also to Apple and to the FBI. According to Warren, "I was contacted by law enforcement about bad content on the App. Threats were made against users, moderators and my family."

PostSecret's creators tried to come up with a solution, including pre-screening user posts. In the end, Warren said, "Deciding to remove the App from the App Store last week and holding back the release of the Android version cost us money but we feel it was the right thing to do." The PostSecret blog will continue to operate.

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