MySpace Vs. Facebook
I'm having trouble with my loyalty.
I loved MySpace when I first became a user, and condemned the birth of Facebook as a cheap, tacky alternative. It was what people used who had no desire to express their personality, no computer skills whatsoever, and no urge to explore networks. And I know - there are countless applications to add on to your Facebook profile to give you personality, but telling people what kind of a kisser you are, or what drink you are, or how many bloody fish you have in your sodding aquarium isn't the same as being able to upload your own art for your background, or uploading your own music for others to hear etc etc. There is a huge difference. That said, if Facebook were to add these functions, I would be a Facebook devotee for life. But they won't. Of course.
Danah Boyd (a great writer on social sites and the like), once wrote that MySpace is for "...freaks, geeks, or queers", and Facebook is for, "...goodie two shoes, jocks, and athletes." I think this may have been the case, but just can't be anymore.
I can't remember the last time I had a conversation via MySpace. Of course, this could mean that every single person I know is a jock or goodie two shoes, but I can safely say that this isn't the case. Yes, I might be a white, middle class girl, who went to boarding school and played lacrosse, but that doesn't mean that I'm automatically struck from the list of possible geeks, or those who lead an alternative lifestyle (and I'm not using that to be PC about being gay). It also doesn't mean that all my friends are goodie two shoes. What it does mean is that Facebook is an easy, safe, reliable (how many times is MySpace down for repairs!!1), private, fun to use site. My favourite feature is the message threads (although, I would like the choice of folders, as I do have some mails that are just piling up), although I do bemoan the photo system; how many options do you need to upload one bloody photo?! Back to the threads; they're clear and easy to use - hell even my Mum could use them. But maybe that's the point. My Mum could use it. Is this a stigma?? Although MySpace could be used by my Mum too, I doubt she'd get the hang of designing her own profile. God I could go on forever about this. It's amazing to think that some people will now judge us on what social network site we use. Does it matter? I use both, but yes, am leaning towards Facebook. I'm tempted to say 'who uses MySpace now?', but then I'd just be judging. I don't know. Is MySpace a stepping stone? Is Facebook for older generations? Is Facebook for less imaginative people? Is MySpace for people who just like to spy on strangers or ex lovers? I don't know. The list could go on forever.
The only thing I'm concerned with is what either of my profiles say about me. I think they're pretty accurate. There's not too much shit, they're honest, they're up to date. I'm not sure what this makes me though. A freaky, geeky, queer or a goodie two shoes, middle class, white jock? Can't I be both, or is there really still such a social divide between 'types' on networking sites, considering MySpace has been with us for 4 years, and Facebook 3 (which is about 100 years in tech terms)?
I suppose in a minute, another site will come along, and thousands of users will defect to that, opening up a whole new category to put people in. I'll probably join it, but then have to also class myself as a Hispanic African too. Whatever. I could pull that off.
In the meantime, enjoy some Hank Williams III:
5 Shots of Whiskey
(Does this mean I'm a little bit country too?)