What is Myspace?

So, you keep hearing the word, Myspace (and yes, it is just one word) and you’re wondering, what in the world is myspace and what am I missing out on? It’s the latest craze to hit the online networking market for teens and adults alike. Myspace allows its users to set up free accounts where they are able to maintain their own page with personal pictures, blogs, comments, and personal information such as hobbies, likes or dislikes, favorite movies…you get the idea. The idea behind this networking site is to keep in touch with friends while being able to offer way to personalize your page with a background, your favorite song and video and other various things. It becomes this page that is a little window into who you are.

Myspace has become a growing addiction. I use the word addicting because, well, it is! Just as when email became big back in the 90s and everyone couldn’t wait to get home and check their email because someone might have sent them one – well, this is the new “email” for the 21st century. When another member sends you a message, comment, picture comment or a new friend request, myspace will alert you once you sign in that you have new items to check out. It can be very addictive for this very reason because sometimes the people that are sending you messages are old friends you haven’t seen in a long time and now you are able to reconnect and maintain some sort of contact with each other through each other’s pages.

One of the nice things is, when you first sign-up the creator of myspace, Tom, is automatically added as your friend. So, don’t feel too bad starting up and your friends list looks a bit drab! But that’s only where it starts – there is a search mechanism that myspace has where you are able to search for members by their email address, high school or college they have attended or are attending, their name, etc. There are a number of ways to try and find someone on this website. One of the most popular ways people are finding old friends or making new ones, is by checking out other members’ friends list. This list can be viewed by clicking the link on a members’ page (under their visibly displayed “Top 8 Friends” but is quickly becoming a “Top 20,” I’ve noticed.). This will take you to a list of people who are that particular member’s friends. Let’s say you see an old friend and want to list them as your friend, you can click on their picture and be directed to their page. Once there, you can click on the button that allows you to add them to your friends list and voila! Another friend!

It seems as though it’s becoming more and more of a popularity contest because there are a number of members on myspace who have thousands of friends on their myspace page. More than likely only 10 of them ever message or comment on that member’s page – but why have only 10 when you can have 1,000? Tila Tequila, the most popular person on myspace has put that number to shame! As of May 1, 2006, she has over 97,000 friends collected on her page. She has adorned the cover of Stuff magazine as one of the 101 most sexiest women online. Who ever though having the most friends would get you so much attention (well, outside of high school, I mean!).

Recently, myspace has become the target of the news and media because it has become an easy target for child predators and pedophiles because of all the personal information teens are putting up on their page. The variety of information can easily be pieced together from signing up using your first and last name (which is also how many people can search you by), what city and state you live in, the schools you have attended and are currently attending, to what kinds of things you like and who you hang out with and where. Because of this, many parents and guardians have been alerted to monitor their childrens’ myspace page to make sure they’re not offering up information they shouldn’t be.

With that said, myspace, when used properly, is a great way to maintain communication with friends, make new ones, network and advertise whatever you want. It has become a huge phenomenon in the face of other online community pages. Perhaps because you can showcase a bit of yourself on a more personal level are what draw many members to it (over 75,000,000 as a matter of fact). Regardless of its use, it’s popularity is soaring because of the convenience in keeping friendships alive all over the country and all over the world! I do have to say that myspace cannot be understood by just reading someone else’s interpretation of it – set-up an accountn for yourself and check out what all the hype is about. Happy myspacing!

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