July 31, 2008

Myspace, How I Loathe Thee. Oh, Let Me Count The Ways.

Let's start with an example:

“Met You On MySpace” a song by pre-teen punk trio, Care Bears On Fire, is a cute, but cautionary tale about online intimacy, friendship, and being duped by a sleazy unicorn.

"You said you were 12/And lived in my nabe/But you're really 300/and you live in a cave."

Q: Aw. Sounds cute right?

A: Not in the slightest.

It is profoundly disturbing that a group of 13-year-olds are addressing, in post-rock songs(!), the realities of the empty connections that are often found on social networking websites like Myspace.com. As I've listened to the song, I realize just how the website (which I'm sure Tom started with earnest intentions), has become a place full of empty connections.

Currently, I am considering deleting my profile. I've had it for over four years. I used to love having it. It kept me up on the latest trends, turned me on to new music, and most importantly, kept me in close communication with my friends, but now I hate it. The main reason I've kept it for this long (and probably continue for awhile) is for networking purposes.

As I was looking through my Friend List this afternoon, I counted a total 9 friends I talk to on a regular basis. While it sounds like I have a healthly circle of close friends, it's pretty pathetic compared to the other 147 I don't talk to.

It also got me thinking of something I read in high school (which I will paraphrase for the context of this blog): How many hours a day do we spend in front of a television screen, or a computer screen? What are we being screened from? How much of our lives come through a screen, vicariously? Is watching things as exciting as doing things? The minutes and hours that to life? (excerpted from Revolution on Canvas)

Now, I'm starting wonder if keeping my Myspace is worth it. Instead of making me feel closer to the people I know, I feel further away than ever. I am separated by a dense wall of technology.


Chris said...

on big ditto.

Chris said...

and by 'on', i meant ONE.

Del said...

John B's 'I've Been Stalking You On Myspace' is a more tongue in cheek, but no less incisive parody of the network.

I think you're right. We communicate in increasingly remote fashion. Via messages on Facebook, Bebo and Myspace, through email or text messages. Kinda depressing.