By Fabiola Murcia, 16, Santa Monica HS
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Fabiola would choose Xanga over LiveJournal anytime.

Last summer, I took two college classes, but when it came time for tests I would not even study. Instead, I was checking my e-mail for updates my friends had made on their journals. I also would arrive early at the college to check my e-mail for updates. I would check during breaks of the three-hour classes, and right when I got home. I would wait to eat dinner until I saw a new entry.

You are probably wondering what Xanga is if you’ve never heard about it. Don’t feel clueless, I didn’t know about it either until my friends told me it was an online journal where you can write about everything that troubles or tickles you.

From fan site to what’s up?

My Xanga page started off as a fan site for a kid actor named Jeremy Sumpter. I got positive feedback from people all over the world saying it was a great site with good pictures of the actor. But then after two months, my friends started telling me to get over a 15-year-old. I didn’t want everybody to know about my obsession with a kid actor so I got embarrassed and decided to add entries about me.

Now I write about stuff at school or things I do like what movies I saw. Xanga is the place where I vent my feelings about not doing too well on tests (which happens rarely!). Sometimes, if I’m too lazy to write a long message, I simply say something like "today was very busy…love Fabi." I am happy to know people are listening, even if it’s just my friends.

There are other online journals, like (which is free like Xanga) and However, I think Xanga is easier to use because those online journals don’t tell you by e-mail when your friend has updated her page. With Xanga, you don’t have to go to your friend’s page. If you sign up for the updates, they get delivered to your e-mail. When you receive an update, writing a comment in response is fun and easy. In the e-mail, you simply click on the "add comments" link. Then the comment appears on their Xanga page and is e-mailed back to them.

Getting your friends’ updates is fun because you get to catch up on their lives. My friends unload their thoughts about everything, from movies to shopping or even their political views. Xanga is more interesting to use over school breaks like summer. That is when the real updates happen because people have more time to update their journal and they do more things that they can write about.

My friends now tell me that Xanga is old. They have moved on to LiveJournal, but I still like writing in my online diary and knowing they get my Xanga updates.