Julia Cordray has already established a rough few days. She learned a difficult life lesson: Be cautious everything you say on the web. Google forgets nothing. Stick and stones may break your bones, however your words will always get back to bite you.
The co-founder and CEO of Peeple, a controversial forthcoming app she infamously described to The Washington Post the other day as “Yelp for folks,” has received multiple death threats. She’s been called “delusional,” “sociopathic,” and a “bitch” on “nearly every social-media tool possible,” and that’s not the half of it. Her investors, family members and colleagues are catching some serious heat, too.
She says she’s gone viral and for all “the incorrect reasons.” Her name has been smeared, slandered and slaughtered, dragged through the forever staining digital mud. Fake Twitter accounts in her name and likeness continue steadily to burp up as section of the collective indigestion gurgling around her cruel-sounding idea of rating people like restaurants — romantically, professionally and personally, stars and all. Petitions to avoid Peeple’s release are gathering steam.
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Still, Cordray is undeterred. The 33-year-old Canadian recruiter told Entrepreneur in a LinkedIn message over the weekend that Peeple will indeed launch as planned, regardless of the growing backlash surrounding it. And, no, it’s “not really a hoax,” she assured us. It’s very real and it’s really misunderstood.
“Peeple will never be an instrument to tell other humans how horrible they are,” Cordray wrote in a post she published on LinkedIn yesterday. “Actually, it’s the precise opposite,” she said. “Peeple is a POSITIVE ONLY APP. You want to bring positivity and kindness to the world. And today I’m likely to use myself for example for what can occur when negative comments could be made about you without your approval.”
Cordray, also the CEO of 96 Talents and Career Fox, told us that the business was registered in Canada in October 2014. Whenever we asked why she didn’t appear on HELLO America (GMA) to guard Peeple the other day, as promoted in a Facebook post published by her startup, she said she didn’t continue the show “because [GMA] got bullied by people if they discovered we were being supported by them.” Today, she decided to a phone interview with Entrepreneur, even providing valid contact details, but has yet to schedule a period to talk.
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Meanwhile, Peeple, which Cordray co-founded with her best friend, Nicole McCullough, has completely vanished from the interwebs, apart from the glut critical headlines published about any of it, including ours. Not merely may be the official Peeple website gone with out a trace, so can be the startup’s Facebook, Twitter and YouTube accounts. Cordray said within an open letter to Twitter today that she removed Peeple’s official account on the favorite social media network because “we felt that Twitter is a location for abuse not business plus they don’t do anything to safeguard its users.”
Her product, will, however, protect the reputations of its users, she claims, swaddling them in “ONLY THE POSITIVE.” Actually, “There is absolutely no way to even make negative comments,” on Peeple, she says, in a complete reversal from her earlier stance.
Apparently Peeple, like its creators, is sorely misunderstood because now Cordray is positioning it as a feel-good, opt-in only social endorsement tool — a mutual admiration society where people can’t be discussed without first supplying their “explicit permission.” Unlike Peeple’s FAQ, which includes also mysteriously disappeared, she also said there is absolutely no 48-hour waiting period to scrub negative comments.
Important thing: Enjoy it or not, Peeple is coming, at least according to its makers, and folks will have to cope with it. How about you? Would you rate friends and family, colleagues and lovers on Peeple? You want to know. Reveal in the Comments section below.