Innovation That Matters

An online diary that's private by default

Publishing & Media

It’s been more than a decade since online diaries first appeared, and during that time most have transformed into communications of a much more public sort than the paper counterparts that inspired them. Aiming to restore some of the original privacy to today’s ubiquitous blog, Toronto-based Penzu offers a secure online journaling medium that’s private by default. Penzu is an online diary and personal journal that is focused on privacy. The core component of Penzu’s interface is what it calls “the pad,” resembling a sheet of blank journal paper. Users begin by signing up—basic use is free. After that they can begin writing immediately on the pad, and Penzu saves their work automatically. Entries can be searched, sorted, filtered, renamed or discarded at any time, and photos can be uploaded from the user’s computer or from Flickr. Most distinguishing of all, however, is that all entries made on the site are private by default, with an additional password-protection option for those who desire it. When users do decide to share their work, they can do so via email or a public link that opens it up to comments. The basic service is free, and there’s also a premium version (Penzu Pro) that’s priced at USD 19 per year. For that price, users get additional features including military-grade security and importing from LiveJournal. While most blogging tools—from WordPress to Tumblr—let users keep their entries private, Penzu could well appeal to audiences that view privacy is a top concern. Diarists in 170 countries currently use Penzu, the company says, but the service is available only in English. One to partner with on a localized version for your part of the world…?



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