Create your own: ONLINE JOURNAL
By: Rebecca Schwartz
Need to get your feelings out? Want to keep in touch with friends and family without having to personally address each and everyone of them? LiveJournal.com is a free service designed to customize and create your very own on-line journal. Within seconds, the world can know the story of your life…as you type it.
Using the member directory, you can search for members who write about things that interest you. There are also paid accounts starting at $5 for two months, that allow you special features, including text messages, an e-mail address, and faster access to your journal.
Brad Fitzpatrick created LiveJournal.com in 1999. Initially, he was updating his own journal for friends to read. After letting his friends use his Web-based journal, the method caught on and became a huge success, currently used by over 800,000 people worldwide.
If the Internet is open to the public, the idea of having such a private medium of expression on the Internet was a little scary to me. Have no fear. You control who reads your words. Security levels range from public (open to the entire universe) and private (your eyes only), to friends (anyone on your livejournal buddy list) and even custom where you pick who gets to read it.
In doing a little of my own research, I read through quite a few journal entries. It was totally weird. I felt I was intruding on complete strangers. They seem to be no different from any other diary: daily frustrations, accomplishments, and questions. There is, however, a picture feature, which allows the writer to add pictures. One woman was describing earrings she received on Valentines Day. She didn’t have to do too much describing though…she showed a picture. Reading about someone else’s life reminded me of the new trend in reality television, it was pretty entertaining. I thought about starting my own online journal, but couldn’t quite see myself pouring out my heart on the web…even if you can control the security. I think I’ll stick to pencil and paper…but the decision it yours. Check out www.livejournal.com for more information.
This begs the question…is it a journal if it’s on the web?