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This secret society is not so secret on Facebook

This may be why Skull and Bones don’t rely on social media.


Miles Klee


Establishing a proper secret society takes a certain amount of finesse—membership must be closely restricted and discreet, but not so clandestine that the outside world never knows of the group’s existence. What’s the point of exclusivity if outsiders don’t know they’re being excluded? 

It was likely this conundrum that caused some organizers to miscalculate in the launch phase of a new, allegedly elite club in Vancouver, Canada. Somewhat unimaginatively (and grandiosely) calling their project “The Secret Society,” they first established a Facebook page open to likes from any interested party, along with a website where one could apply, with “Celebrity,” “Public Figure,” “Actor,” and “Model” among the qualifying criteria listed in a handy drop-down menu.

“We accept beauty, wealth & intelligence,” the Facebook page explains. “The Social Elite. A non-judgemental experience in unity and fun founded on the commonality of exclusivity.” Across the clichéd, romance-novel-like banner image of two dark female faces, a skull, and an old-fashioned key appears the rhetorical question: “Have you received your invite?”

Several thousand people were invited, in fact, as became evident when the society created its first Facebook event and left the guest list public for a few hours. You can no longer see who else plans on attending, but you still have the option to invite your own friends along—this despite the club’s promise to provide “the best this our city has to offer properly separated from generic public consumption.” Yep, nothing says “not for the generic public” like Facebook!

Nevertheless, the Secret Society has a pretty high opinion of itself: “We are a select few, handpicked, reviewed and invited sharing within the elegance and entertainment luxury to which we are entitled,” they write in a gush of syntactic awkwardness that suggests potential candidates needn’t boast an Ivy League education. Anyway, see you at the party—sounds like simply everyone will be there.

Photo by John Sison/Flickr

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