Is web-journaling dead?
It seems at first glance as if Xanga and LiveJournal have been killed by MySpace, which very few people (by our count) seem to be using as a place for reflection or expression. MySpace seems to have lent itself well to posturing but not so well to introspection.
Yet there are still quite a few living Xangas, LiveJournals, and TypePads, among others: Small spaces on the web where people pour out their hearts, empty out their closets, and, one typed character at a time, strive to put something down that might help them understand themselves better, or at least make it to tomorrow.
It is for these people — these lucky people who have discovered something personal and meaningful on the World Wide Web, something that continues to live even as social fads have ceased to live — that we bring back the Friday 5.
First, however, a few very important notes must be made.
The Friday 5 is in no way connected to the original Friday Five meme or to Heather, its creator, except in the way that the Friday Five connected thousands of us through the simple, beautiful concept of asking us to answer five questions each week and then to check out others’ answers. We feel we owe Heather a huge thank-you, mad props, big ups, and Platonic hugs for the work she did. As of this writing, Heather does not know about our efforts here to steal her idea, but we hope she will offer us her blessing.
None of the questions from that meme will intentionally be asked here, except for questions that seem to occur naturally, as in “What’s your favorite ____________?”
Second, we hate spam and we hate spammers. Your first two comments will be held for approval until one of us can verify the link to your journal, weblog, MySpace, or whatever. If your comment or link looks the least bit spammy, it will not be published. Once you’ve published two comments, you’ll be given a user account and won’t have to wait for approval.
Until bandwidth becomes an issue, we’ll keep the archives open; however, if we have to start paying our webhost extra for this, our first move will be to lock the archives perhaps a month after each week’s 5 has originally been posted.
We are going to avoid using paid advertisements for as long as possible. We are not above asking for donations, but until money becomes an issue, we’re doing this for the love of meaningful reflection and discourse. We’re writers, readers, and teachers of writing, and nothing turns us on more than the thought of people using language expressively, introspectively, cognitively, playfully, and creatively. Your participation is going to be thanks enough, until the bandwidth bill gets too large. Did we mention that we’re teachers? 🙂
We welcome suggestions, questions, criticisms, and potential themes for future 5s. Please send them to feedback-at-friday5.org.
And finally: Mean people suck. Be encouraging to one another, or get the hell out.
The first Friday 5 will be posted at midnight, GMT, on June 30, 2006. Spread the word, will ya?