In a blog last month about Generation Y and Blogging, Des Walsh shows his age when he writes about MySpace. First off, in an ad:tech session led by a panel of teenagers, he writes, “one of the most striking pieces of information was that these young people spend a lot of time on MySpace and that is kind of their default ‘location’ online.”

This is surprising? Seriously? I mean, I’m no teenager, but this is still common knowledge. Walsh is showing that despite his finger on the pulse of the professional blogging community, he really has no clue about who is leading the future of technology. The question is ultimately, “what sells?” The answer is based on teenagers. Teenagers are the top consumers in today’s absent-parent culture.

What good does it do to be a professional blogger if you have to go to a conference to learn that teenagers use MySpace? It is the most popular site for teenagers without exception. It is their homepage, their email, their blog, their calendar, their photo book, their chat room, their forum, their mp3 player, their games system, their video player…

Joke all you want about MySpace being for kids. I know plenty of adults who are too proud to join because of their misguided judgments. Not that everyone should join MySpace. No way. I can barely stand it due to the inappropriate advertising by True.com. I’ve already canceled my MySpace account once, only to return despite the advertising because it’s still simply the best way to connect with other people. I don’t care what purposeweb says, Facebook is not the future of social media and could never be unless it receives a total faceLIFT.

Sure, the older you are, the less you may find a reason to use MySpace. I can give you that without laughing at you. Something about being young gives you endless amounts of things to say and the burning desire to communicate all of them with the world. There’s just something appealing to teenagers about having 300+ friends (most of whom you cannot possibly communicate with and still have time to sleep) whom you can flaunt like popularity badges.

I get it. A reasonable adult may look at MySpace and think, this is a waste of my time. I can respect that. Were I not addicted to my own computer and Internet access, I would wholeheartedly agree. There are plenty of things to do with your life that do not revolve around MySpace. If you are content living apart from MySpace, however, I will ask one special resquest of you: don’t show your age by talking about it. 😉

6 responses to “Your View of MySpace Proves Your Age”

  1. Wow! You’ve really drawn a long bow from a mere observation of mine. And I was reporting on a conference in Australia, with comments from young Australians. Are you sure you have all the relevant stats about Australian young people and their use of various sites, all the way from Dallas? When I said that what was reported was “striking”, I meant in the context of the whole session, there was a theme, so to speak, about MySpace. I may be wrong, but my impression was that others in the audience felt this was a standout point, a “takeaway” if you will, for anyone wanting to communicate with that age group, bearing in mind that in the context, which was a conference about advertising and interactive technology, there was a lot of interest in that topic for that age group. It’s not my market but it clearly was for a lot of people there. I made no joke about MySpace being for kids and in fact I’m well aware that a lot of older people use MySpace. I appreciate you wanted to make a point – did you need to set me up as a straw man for the purpose? As for the ageism, I thought that was just something older people indulged in 🙂

  2. I realize that it might have appeared that my entire post was a critique of you, Des, and I apologize for giving that impression. I used your quote as a point about popular views or misconceptions about MySpace, but I wasn’t presuming to know exactly how you feel on its use.

    As for my understanding of relevant stats is concerned, I can tell you that at least 3,000 Australian male profiles age 18 only have joined MySpace since February 1, 2007 (39 days). That means that 76 people from Australia age 18 or pretending to be age 18 have joined MySpace every day. That’s 18 year old males only. What about females, seventeen year olds, sixteen year olds, etc?

    No intention of using you as a straw man. As with many bloggers, I read many blogs and they occasionally inspire posts on CultureFeast. I still find your surprise astonishing. I would expect a blogger who writes about business and blogging to be aware of MySpace as a homepage, starter page, entire Internet system, and definitely blog. Because of it’s one-stop-shop functionality, it’s not surprise at all that lesser savvy people who join at a friend’s recommendation might only associate blogging with MySpace. Not to mention that many people only blog on MySpace (myself included, once upon a time) simply because they can guarantee that their friends and contacts will read their blogs due to MySpace’s nifty blog subscription options.

    Please don’t take my criticism too personally. As a copywriter/search marketer/blogger, I consider some things to be common knowledge because I have to stay up on these things. If your blog hits an entirely separate and different audience, I’d be very surprised, but not at all bothered. Maybe you should poll your readers to see who has a MySpace account and who blogs on it. I’d be interested to know what your readers do.

  3. Daniel

    Thanks for your response. This is my problem. You’ve attributed “surprise” to me, when the word does not appear anywhere in my post. Nor is there to the best of my searching is there anywhere I said I was “surprised”. Because I wasn’t “surprised”. Yes, I knew about blogs on MySpace, I knew it was going gangbusters, I have had a non-active blog on MySpace for ages. I found the information as presented “striking”. The real point of the post was actually in the title, where I wondered whether, for Gen Y, “blogging”=”MySpace”. Which would mean that a lot of what blogging “pros” talk about in terms of blogging platforms, for instance, might soon or at least for some demographics, be obsolete, if it isn’t already. So in fact I was closer to your observations than you were prepared to see or acknowledge. That’s the “straw man” point – you wanted to make a statement and you took words I never wrote to make it. I am willing to be criticised, but preferably for what I say or think, not for what you thought I said or thunk. But it’s been a good lesson for me, and I thank you – that as my friend Dave Taylor says, bloggers need to develop a thick skin.

  4. Since when did my name change to purposweb? And, I might be wrong about facebook, but it is yet to be seen. Anyway, here’s hoping Virb wins out.

  5. […] Nathan added a link to Virb in a CultureFeast comment the other day. I refused to click the link for a solid 24 hours, quoting such reasons as “I’m sick and tired of reading about new sites in the 30 blogs I read daily.” I mean, hey, that’s a valid excuse, right? Everyone wants to be on the first wave of comments about Twitter, Virb, MyBlogLog, Joost, Freebase, Urbis, Muvas, NeoWorx, Scroogle, and a hundred other sites. I’m sick of hearing about them, honestly. Sure, I check them out, ’cause there’s always the fear that I’ll miss out on the next best thing if I don’t. But most of them turn into sites I never visit more than once a month. […]

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