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A Friend Who Knows All About YouThe image of diaries to 100 Yonseians
Yoo Young-seo  |
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승인 2008.10.28  16:34:49
트위터 페이스북 구글 카카오스토리

WRITING A diary everyday was probably a boring and familiar type of homework when you were young. Keeping diaries of everyday life events is a common homework, assigned especially in elementary schools. This writing assignment aims to improve the overall writing skills of children as well as to help them realize the importance of introspection. However, keeping a regular diary is a big burden to children. People these days keep diaries as their precious treasures and write them in their own pleasing as well as unique ways. The Yonsei Annals surveyed 100 Yonseians in order to find out how they tend to think of diaries.

Did you write diaries for homework when you were in elementary, middle, or high school?
   The idea of diaries conjures an image of a fussy teacher who always checks diary homework. Students were standing in a line to present their diaries, to be either pleased or disappointed by the teacher’s comments and “Excellent!” seals. Keeping diaries seemed to be common as daily homework assignments in school or holiday assignments for vacations. A total of 93 out of 100 Yonseians replied that they had written diaries as homework when they were in elementary, middle or high school. Only 7 hadn’t been assigned such homework, while 35 of those who had diary homework responded that writing diaries was annoying to them. Furthermore, 25 others said that they felt that the nature of the assignment was superficial, since they made up diaries for teachers to check. Maybe young students got sick of writing diaries because of their compelling force as homework. I bet many Yonseians have experienced writing several diary entries at once because they left the diaries unattended for several days.

Have you written diaries for homework when you were in elementary, middle, or high school?
Yes (93)
No (7)

What is the meaning of a diary to you?
Practicing writing skills (7)
Records/memories in order to recall the past (47)
Secret keeper (13)
Mandatory homework for children (31)
Others (2)

What is the meaning of a diary to you?


   When asked 31 out of 100 respondents seem to be in trauma, as they said that they still think of writing a diary as a kind of duty, from their old elementary school days. However, 47 others said that a diary is a precious record of memories that helps them to remember their past. Although there is still a rather hard image of diary as homework in Yonseians’ minds, it is proven that a diary itself is not really annoying to Yonseians. They only disliked their everyday homework! Writing diaries is not a must-do task for Yonseians now; many of them probably prefer to keep their own diaries, so that nobody can read them except themselves. Yonseians have a positive view toward diaries now, compared to the image of diaries from their early years.

What is the biggest difference between online diaries and handwritten diaries?
Nothing is different (7)
Online diaries can be open to others (54)
Photos can be added to online diaries (12)
Online diaries are easier to use (24)
Others (3)

Have you read somebody else’s handwritten diaries?
   Your friend always writes something in a diary book, smiles to him/herself, and conceals it carefully as he/she reads it. When you ask what is in the diary, the friend doesn’t tell you. Then, one day, you see the diary book left alone in a room. This is the time, a rare opportunity to read your friend’s diary book. Would you take a chance? Or have you already read others’ handwritten diary books? Fully 63 out of 100 respondents said they have boldly taken the chance and peaked inside, and 22 of them read the diary book due to simple curiosity and most premeditated the act. Another 21 also came across the handwritten diary by chance. Many people use diary books because only they themselves can read and hold those books. Still, there are many watchers lurking about! If you are keeping a diary, be careful not to have your secrets revealed.


Do you keep diaries now?
   Even though the number of respondents who don’t keep diaries now was bigger than that of those who do, quite a large portion of the respondents (41) said they are keeping their own diaries now. Yonseians who don’t keep their own diaries now think writing diaries is troublesome for them, and that they have no time to devote to writing a diary. They may think that writing and keeping a perfect diary takes too much time. However, 41 respondents who are keeping diaries don’t seem to exert themselves to spend too much time on it. They don’t write their diaries regularly, only once or twice a week when they have free time or whenever they choose to. Respondents also prefer to write short diaries quickly. Respondents who keep diaries replied that they use small diary books or online diaries, such as mini-homepages’ diary tap or blogs. It seems that Yonseians like to keep it nice and simple! Though these diaries may seem small and simple, they can hold great and meaningful content within. Most of you may have come across your old diaries by chance when you were rearranging your stuff. When you read the old diaries, you might feel sentimental and develoop an urge to meet your old friends. To help you recall your past is the best merit of keeping diaries. Yonseians write about memorable situations when they were proud, grim, and happy in their diaries. You will smile someday when you read about today’s pleasures and worries.
What is the biggest difference between handwritten diaries and online diaries?


   These days, many people manage their own blogs or mini-homepages online in which they can post artifacts of their daily events or anything that shows who they are and what they like. Because of the characteristics of those kinds of online resources, many people also keep their diaries on the Internet. Those blogs or homepages offer not only neat fonts but also have the visual advantage of showing photographs, splendid pictures, as well as a variety of graphics. There are some different advantages between handwritten diaries and online ones. Diary books and memory books are easy to carry around, while it’s convenient to use online diaries. A total of 54 out of 100 respondents said the biggest difference is that the Internet diaries can be open to the public. If the writer opens his/her online diaries to people, many people can get to know the writer and sympathize with the diary entries.

Do you keep a diary now?


Yes (41)
No (59)

Have you read someone else’s handwritten diary?
Yes (63)
No (37)

                           *            *            *
   Keeping diaries may have been a tedious task for you when you were young, but there are some merits to keeping diaries. Didn’t it help you to reflect on yourself? Keeping diaries taught you how to arrange your thoughts, and helped you to reflect upon yourself by reminding you of your old memories and failures. Nobody checks your diary anymore, so you can ease your mind by confiding in your diary. Keeping a diary allows you to understand and see yourself objectively. If you write regularly, you will obtain these merits by receiving feedback from yourself. If you need a friend who reflects yourself effectively, just keep your diary in your own way! Your friend, be it on paper or online, will keep your secrets and help you by guiding your way into the future.


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