February 26, 2014

Anonymity: Lessons learned building an anonymous social network

Some great thoughts regarding the history of Formspring and purposefully designing an anonymous experience. I love this bit:

Investors will pass on your company, peers will criticize you, parents will yell at you. Maybe they’re right. And maybe not.

It’s so true. I’ve always considered people who visit GitHub in a logged out state to be a different type of customer — but a customer all the same. Every time I’ve brought up this idea to people outside of GitHub, it’s been met with a strange astonishment and a scolding for not sending them through the signup flow meat grinder ASAP.

Anonymous can be a part of your product. Design it.