Keeping a diary in cyberspace



This research was conducted into people who post their diaries on the Internet (hereinafter referred to as Web diaries) to reveal the psychological implications of writing a diary in cyberspace. A total of 1,529 people were extracted from full-text search engines and collections of Web diary links and surveyed. Invitations to participate were sent to the authors of the extracted home pages by e-mail and the survey itself was conducted with the use of a home page form. There were 377 valid responses, giving a response rate of 24.7%. The Web diaries were broken down into four types: (a) self-conscious records of fact (memoirs); (b) records of fact conscious of a relationship with the reader (journals); (c) self-conscious expressions of sentiment (“(narrowly defined) diaries”); (d) expressions of sentiments conscious of a relationship with the reader (“open diaries”). The four types were described bidimensionally as (a) a record of fact or an expression of sentiment, and (b) the authors' consciousness is either self-oriented or reader-oriented. Moreover, these dimensions are closely intertwined with utility and self-consciousness.


  1. We would like to express our gratitude for the assistance of Bunkyo University and the Japanese Society of Social Psychology.