Sunday, April 15, 2007

Crazy World...

What a crazy world in which we play.

Someday, we're going to have to explain this whole "Myspace" thing to our children and grandchildren, and they're going to look at us with the same incredulous expression that we give our parents when we see that old photo with the bell bottoms and Farrah Fawcett hair.

"Why, oh why, would you do THAT?"

Seriously. Think about it. If your significant other doesn't have you as the first person in their Top Friends, it's a serious offense, isn't it? Forgetting to change your Relationship Status when entering or leaving a Relationship leaves others questioning whether or not you're really committed to your action.

Myspace has become a part of our personal identity, and a source of cultural validation. How often do you see bulletins requesting Photo or Journal comments? Why do we track the visits to our pages so closely? Because we put ourselves out there, and if no one is watching, we begin to question our worth, and worse, our friendships. When we notice that we are no longer present on a Friend's list, don't we wonder why?

I say all this with a grain of salt, because I am as addicted to the myspace community as the next person. I recently was a part of an argument solely centered on the fact that, in the shuffle to add family into my Top Friends, one of my nearest and dearest (no sarcasm intended) was shuffled to Ordinary Friend status. Shortly before, I had a heated debate about the presence of my ex-boyfriend's picture on a family member's page. Last year, I received a hostile email from a friend who was angry that I hadn't made an appearance on their page in awhile. We place so much stock in an online community, we're willing to end friendships based on what someone did, or what they forgot to do, on our pages.

Did you know that it's legal to hire, or not hire, based on your myspace page? Last year, a woman was a front-runner for a job at a major corporation…until the recruiter Googled her name (and don't get me started on the cultural takeover that is Google), and found the candidates myspace page. Which happened to contain information which did not portray the candidate in a legally pleasing light. It would have been a PR nightmare to hire her, so the recruiter didn't. The candidate sued, and the judge threw out the case, saying that what you put on the internet is public property.

How many charges have been pressed recently because someone was stupid enough to post pictures, video, or a journal entry regarding the crime? I can think of 3, off hand.
There are more, but I'm not willing to Google them.

Someday, we're going to be watching VH1s "I Love the 00's!" and listening to Kathy Griffin, Hal Sparks, and Wayne Brady commenting on the Myspace insanity. And our kids are going to turn around and look at us and ask us what the hell we were thinking.
We'll laugh, and shake our heads, and pretend we don't still remember the nickname of everyone in our Top 8 Friends.

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