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The Truth About HBO’s Secret Sharing Site

Yesterday, we introduced you to another promotion for the HBO drama “Big Love”, a site called Web of Secrets that aims to get people to share their darkest secrets. Well, the real secret is that HBO and ad agency Sarkissian Mason completely ripped off Frank Warren‘s PostSecret.com &#151 an artful, original blog dedicated to sharing people’s innermost emotions.

AgencySpy has learned that prior to creating Web of Secrets, Sarkissian Mason contacted Mr. Warren offering him a deal if they could use PostSecret cards in the Big Love campaign.

Mr. Warren’s response: “No deal,” he told AgencySpy in an e-mail yesterday.

If you’re still unfamiliar with PostSecret, watch the video above. The site’s content, submitted by people like you, is disturbingly honest &#151 so much so that any other format (e.g. HBO’s self-serving attempt) would destroy the power of the secrets shared.

Kudos to Mr. Warren for protecting what may be one of the few truly open portals to the human heart.

Of the campaign, Sarkissan Mason CD Aaron Sedlak said, “It gives fans a way to literally connect with the characters on the show. And shows how the secrets we keep actually link us all together. Consider it a dirty little online
community.”

Well, now that we know your agency tried to piggyback PostSecret, we can see why it is doomed to fail. Sharing deep secrets is not “dirty.” The point is the cleansing effect that divulging brings. It’s not dirty &#151 it’s heavy, deep and cathartic &#151 like carving a tumor out of your body. It hurts, it leaves a scar, but it heals.

What HBO has failed to recognize is that although Mr. Warren “owns” PostSecret, he knows it would be wrong to dismantle it for the sake of anything that diminishes that power &#151 especially not for a half-rate television program. How anyone could read PostSecret and not understand that is shocking; it’s revealing; and terribly sad.

More:Big Love Gets All PostSecret

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