Privacy-obsessed social network's promoter proves public embarrassment

When you've got the buzz from Demo, Chris Shipley's startup conference, and $30 million in funding, it's hard to believe a startup would sink to spamming blogs with upbeat comments. But social network Moli, which hawks itself as a privacy-oriented alternative to Facebook, isn't above such base tactics. Blogger Sabrina Dent called the network on its spam-laden socializing, and was soon greeted with an overly enthusiastic proclamation of Moli's greatness. Turns out Moli's director of customer service, Daniel DiFiore, has been slinking about the Web, masquerading as Hawk5721, Moli evangelist. The goal, of course, is to delude people into thinking that Hawk5721's comments represent a surge of Internet users embracing Moli.

But Hawk5721's identity proved none too private — ironic, given what Moli promises. You'd think after the great Facebook bank-intern escapade, people would learn to actually keep their private data, you know, private. The public availability of a picture showing DiFiore drinking a jello shot on Moli.com just proves that Moli isn't about to disrupt the marketplace.