d-Wizz Hankuk Chingu Book

Membership Criteria

When I made the first edition of the HCB in 2005, my primary objective was to compile a record of the contact information for the significant number of Korean people I was beginning to meet and make friends with. In the beginning, I added every Korean I met to the list, but I noticed that some of these people have only met me once or twice, and I haven't seen them again since. Others I have since lost contact with, or they didn't give me sufficient details to maintain contact with them. I realised that the people on the list were not "friends", they were rather "acquaintences;", and a small number of these were in more frequent contact with me than the rest. I decided that a system of criteria for inclusion in the HCB was necessary, and so I developed these rules:
  • The candidate must be Korean.
  • The candidate must contact me three times on three seperate calendar days.
  • At least one of these contacts should be in person.
  • Contact must be "meaningful" - ie, it must be more than merely a greeting.
  • Contact should be a minimum of 5 hours total before membership is approved.

If the contact criteria have been satisfied, the candidate should supply the necessary information for a 친구 page to be created:
  • The candidate should select a 친구 number from those available on the empty list.
    If the candidate does not make a selection, I will select one myself.
  • The candidate should give me a high resolution photograph of themselves, preferably with no other people in it.
  • The candidate should give me their Korean mailing address, e-mail, Cyworld, phone number and birthday.
    Some of this information may be withheld at the candidate's discretion.
  • New members of the HCB will be listed on this website, unless they advise me to the contrary.

Additional notes on membership management:
  • I still record the details of the Koreans I meet, but they no longer automatically gain membership in the HCB.
  • On their second contact, they will get an entry in the "pending" section, until they qualify for membership as described above.
  • The "pending" entry is removed 18 months after the last contact, if they have not satisfied the membership criteria.
  • Some members, especially those admitted before 2007, did not meet these criteria. Indeed, there are many who I have only met once before they disappeared into oblivion. I am loathe to remove them from the HCB, but I suppose after 5 years, I might have to purge the dead wood out of the system. If (when) I decide to take this drastic step, the empty list will swell with the chingu numbers currently occupied by these members.

On 2009-09-02, I imagined the concept of awarding blue and red ribbons to certain HCB members to further distinguish those who were "a cut above the rest". The criteria for awarding these ribbons has not been settled exactly, but broadly speaking, a blue ribbon member is one with whom I have had frequent contact with over a prolonged period of time (more than 12 months). A red ribbon member is one with whom I had regular contact, but in the last 6 months or so, that contact has been significantly reduced, or the regular contact has not yet reached 12 months' continuity. I would define "frequent" contact as being at least twice a month, and "regular" contact at least once every 6 weeks. Members without ribbons have had contact with me at less frequent intervals, but are still active. I value the friendship of all members highly, and the awarding of a ribbon is not an indication of preference. It is not my intention to remove or "demote" anybody solely on their ability to keep in touch with me, but this helps me to manage the large network I have quickly developed. Having said that, it is conceivable that if I was unable to contact a member for a very long time (2 or 3 years maybe), that I would consider placing that member in "pending" status until contact was made.

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