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“The Face Book” or U.S. Version of Cyworld is All the Rage

“The Face Book” or U.S. Version of Cyworld is All the Rage

Posted July. 05, 2005 10:37,   


Facebook, or the U.S. version of Cyworld, has been all the rage among U.S. college students.

According to the AP report on July 3, logging on Facebook became a part of daily routine of U.S. college student as well as checking the news and sending the emails. On Facebook, students view other people`s profiles and lists of their friends, and meet the new people with the similar interests.

The website (www.thefacebook.com) was created by three sophomore students of Harvard University on February 2004. The website now boasts 2.8 million members from more than 800 U.S. colleges and 5,800 people open up a new account every day.

Unlike Korea’s Cyworld which is open to anyone, Facebook is restricted to the people who owns an email account of the registered U.S. college. In other words, it is the U.S. version of Cyworld operating around college campuses.

Cheon Hye-rim (21, Harvard University) who is staying in Korea over the summer, logs on to Cyworld everyday, and checks out her college friends` updated profiles and new messages. Cheon already has 146 Facebook "friends," the equivalent of “il chon” in Cyworld.

Profiles allow only one photo for each member, but it contains ample personal information, such as contact information, interests, political view, relationship status, courses taking, summer plans, where you can fill in as much or as little as you want. Instead of offering personal web blog, which Cyworld offers in the form of “mini homepage,” Facebook provides profile search options.

For instance, if you type in Beatles as your favorite artists and click on the name, you can see the list of people whose favorite artist includes Beatles. If you want to befriend with someone on the list, you can send a message or `poke` the person by clicking on the "poke him/her" button. Once you become a friend, you can post a message or a comment on the bulletin board called “Wall.”

Marcia Ammons, a junior at Georgia Institute of Technology said to AP that it is not easy to find people with the same interests in the huge campus. He often searches the people in the same courses on Facebook, to compare the class notes or assignments with them.

You can also join the clubs on Facebook, which is called “Group.” There are clubs based the common interests, such as "Wal-Mart Lovers" or "iPodilicious (iPod fan club)" Some groups have intriguing names: "The Coalition for High-Heeled Women on the Cobblestone" or "Student for California Relocation of Harvard University." "Those clubs are not really serious," says Cheon who often uses Facebook to check the campus parties and to view the party participants.

Song Pyeong-in, pisong@donga.com

Lee Youkyung (Wesleyn University, Class of 2007) contributed to the article as an intern reporter.