In my early high school days, Myspace was the thing everyone talked about. It was the first social media site to connect everyone. I remember around 2005 when all my friend’s started bugging me to get one.
“So when are you gettin’ a Myspace, dude?” My friend, Kristof asked on our way to one of our classes.
“Uhh…what’s that?” I asked, fully knowing that I would probably be bombarded with the typical high school bologna that usually came when someone wasn’t up to date on the very latest trends.
“It’s like an online profile.” He replied, which caught me off guard. I wasn’t expecting to be informed so quickly.
“That sounds stupid,” I replied. “I have AIM.” (I still had AIM).
“No, dude, it’s cooler than AIM…you just have to check it out.”
He wasn’t being his usual, pushy self, which kinda made me actually want to check it out. I went home that night and set up an account. It was interesting to see that I could actually use HTML to create my own layout (which would then educate me on HTML). I played around and made a simple photo with my profile picture being a picture of me rocking the devil horns with my hands (I thought I was original).
From then on, I used social media. Once my entire graduating class was sending me friend requests, I began to base my after-school life on the internet.
With the advent of Myspace came a more user-centered internet experience. Site’s like yourscenesucks.com added a new level of humor. One that I related to as I walked through the halls of my high school. I became more aware of social topics and trends (which my only source at the time was MTV) and generally had a good time.
For about 2-years, Myspace was a great place for people to connect, but, of course, with technology, if you don’t keep up, you get left behind. When Facebook emerged it provided a much more capable user experience. I had a status that I could update whenever, which was actually useful when I needed to steal notes from a class that I skipped, and the fact that it was mostly people my age (unlike now where everyone’s mother is on there) created a small community.
Myspace then had to stay relevant by recreating itself as a music platform. Band’s could promote themselves on the site and whoever was still using it could check them out (which wasn’t that many).
I remember the last dying call for a popular band on Myspace ended up being this:
Myspace was bought out by Viant back in 2011 and last year, Viant was bought out by Time Inc. Now Time Inc. has the rights, but it doesn’t seem like they have an idea of how to utilize it.
According to CEO, Joe Ripp:
“Quite frankly, I hadn’t even gone to the MySpace website before we bought the company, but after going there, it’s a pretty good website, and music is pretty interesting.”
One of the largest trending social media sites in existence is now in the hands of a company who’s owner has no way to yield the effectiveness and thinks that “music is pretty interesting.”
In the end, Myspace had a good run, its ability to connect people through the internet was what made it so popular in it’s hay-day. Every social media platform has its root’s tied back to the Myspace era.