In a semester that has seen the current incarnation of the Wesleyan ACB get mentions from PSafe and other school officials due to its creepy spasms of racism, it may be an object of comfort, or of worry, to know that the ACB of Oberlin, our sister (?) in the Midwest, has had some problems with repressed negative feelings as well. Jezebel has the story of a former student named Cate Minall, who was at first called a slut on Oberlin’s Oberlin Confessional board (which, by the way, requires an Oberlin e-mail address to sign up for, thus ensuring that all intolerance is perfectly endemic to your community) in the 2006-2007 school year. She was like, “okay, fine, everyone gets called a slut on this board. I’m just going to starve the trolls and ignore it.” Things began to escalate and get creepy, though, as some anonymous listener stealthily picked her life apart:
But then things spiraled out of control. Anonymous posters wrongfully accused Minall of spreading STDs, stealing boyfriends, and sleeping with professors in order to pass classes. A 60-page thread piled up overnight that was dedicated entirely to Minall’s sexual exploits, some accurate but most completely false.
“It got to the point where I couldn’t go anywhere on campus, because everything I said in class would be posted and torn apart,” Minall, now 24, recalled. “It wasn’t just on the computer anymore.” Friends and prospective love interests were scared away by the rumors. One night, her room was broken into and trashed. Someone found her address and posted it online, threatening to contact her family and let them know what their little girl had been up to — or, rather, what Oberlin Confessional thought she was up to.