Is there an online platform that will let me post status updates (like on Facebook or Twitter) that AREN'T public--as in, it's for me and me only?
February 3, 2012 8:47 AM   Subscribe

Is there an online platform that will let me post status updates (like on Facebook or Twitter) that AREN'T public--as in, it's for me and me only?

For some background: I've always been a journal-keeper. I really like being able to look back on various points in my life and see what I was doing/thinking/feeling. Facebook has actually been kind of cool in that respect, especially with that new Timeline feature. So, a lot of times I'll have a thought or idea or feeling or funny observation that I want to write record. For example, just now I got my paycheck and thought, "A week of vacation saved up--JOY, be thy name!" (just a dumb little thing but I'd get a kick years down the line out of looking back and seeing that at 27, these are the things that thrill me). Unlike many people I know, incredibly(!), I do NOT consider this worthy of posting on Facebook--no one cares (which I'm totally OK with) and it borders on bragging anyway (and aren't those just the worst?).

That said, is there some sort of application/website where I could easily log in, jot down my thought, have the date/time imprinted, and be able to go back to it later....that NO ONE else could see, or would at least be way easier to set to completely private than Facebook is? I realize I could also set up a Word document but then I have to add the date and stuff myself, and it would be limited to one location (e.g. if I keep it on my home computer, then I don't have access at work). And I could probably set my Facebook statuses so that they are hidden from every person I'm friends with but 1) I'd be too paranoid that I'd miss something and my private thoughts would somehow be exposed, and 2) I'm doing a Facebook-Free February anyway (that might become permanent because....ugh, Facebook).
posted by lovableiago to Computers & Internet (16 answers total) 9 users marked this as a favorite
You could do this with a private document on Google Docs. You could also set up a Wordpress, Blogger, or Livejournal account to be private.
posted by Tomorrowful at 8:49 AM on February 3, 2012

You can also create a circle on Google+ limited to yourself and post just to that circle.
posted by dis_integration at 8:51 AM on February 3, 2012 [3 favorites]

Best answer: OhLife does this.

f you have a private/locked twitter account and don't accept any follow requests, you have this. Same is true of Livejournal, as mentioned above. Periodically, third-party apps which allow you to download all your content pop-up, get popular, and then go away.similar.
posted by crush-onastick at 8:54 AM on February 3, 2012

If you write .LOG in the first line of a new document in Notepad, every time you open it the date and time will be added to the end of the file.

So, you could use Notepad + Dropbox.
posted by Memo at 8:55 AM on February 3, 2012 [12 favorites]

posted by pyro979 at 8:57 AM on February 3, 2012 [1 favorite]

Seconding private Blogger/Wordpress. Easily exported in case you wanted to move to another method and available wherever there's internet.
posted by dozo at 8:58 AM on February 3, 2012

Livejournal can do this.
posted by insectosaurus at 8:58 AM on February 3, 2012 [1 favorite]

Best answer:! Posts are impossible to share short of copy-pasting, can be posted to your account from any computer, and it has a nice interface for both writing and going back to your old posts.
posted by theodolite at 8:59 AM on February 3, 2012 [3 favorites]

Response by poster: Excellent ideas, folks. My first entry shall be "MeFites save the day again!" ;)
posted by lovableiago at 9:19 AM on February 3, 2012

I wouldn't trust anything deep or dark to anything online, but for the record FB will let you create a post that only you can see.
posted by randomkeystrike at 10:01 AM on February 3, 2012

750 Words isn't great for reviewing old entries. And it has a quirk that's a deal-breaker for me: it cuts off your document at midnight and makes you start a fresh page.
posted by roger ackroyd at 10:06 AM on February 3, 2012

You can do it with Twitter - just set your account to private, and deny any follow requests.
posted by lohmannn at 10:34 AM on February 3, 2012 [1 favorite]

I use a WordPress blog (self-hosted, not with the Absolute Privacy plugin installed for maximum paranoia.
posted by epersonae at 10:45 AM on February 3, 2012 [1 favorite]

I used a site called ohlife for this for a while. The design is really minimal and attractive, and in general it stays out of your way and lets you write. One of the features I really like is that they'll send you a daily email reminder if you want. You can just reply to the email and it'll be added to the journal. Since the "random snippets from the past" seems to be something you enjoy, you might also appreciate that they'll (optionally) include a random entry from the past at the bottom of your daily email. The archive view basically looks like a blog, and there's a big button to export all your entries at any time, which is a big plus.

Another option, if you live in the Apple ecosystem, is Day One. It's a suite of iPhone, iPad, and Mac apps for keeping a private journal. The Mac app sits in your menu bar, so a quick entry is just a click away. The archive view is really cool, and you can view everything on a calendar, to give you an idea of how much you're writing. You can also "star" entries, if there's some you can go back and find more easily. The iPhone app is nice too, since it makes it easy to record a quick thought on the go.
posted by duien at 11:02 AM on February 3, 2012

Something I've been keeping an eye on but haven't gotten a chance to experiment with yet is Ubuntu One. It's a service for storing notes, files, music, etc. - 5GB free and you can pay for more - but the interesting part is that it's integrated with the Tomboy note-taking desktop application. Tomboy provides a sort of mini personal wiki and Ubuntu One handles syncing that between multiple computers and gives a web interface to the online copy of it. I can't find a note on their web site but I'm pretty sure that I read that "under the hood" it's the Amazon S3 cloud, like DropBox is. (For Linux and Windows)

In the course of looking at that I came across this comparison of notetaking software at Wikipedia. (Not all web-based though.)
posted by XMLicious at 11:19 AM on February 3, 2012

You can do it on Google+. Make one circle that's just yourself, and post to that.
posted by The corpse in the library at 8:52 PM on February 3, 2012

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