MySpace has been all over the news recently with many reporters visiting it and trying to figure out why it's so successful. (The site founders are not real sure, but having the right tools at the right time is starting to be the general consensus.)
The tools provided by MySpace are not for design or communication, but socializing. And more so than Ryze or Friendster or even LiveJournal, MySpace makes it fun to socialize online. I suspect this is not because they invented any new tools or used them differently, but rather because they discovered a better recipe--the exact right proportion and arrangement of the ingredients.
"Whatchu gonna do with all them friends, all them friends that's on your page," the song begins. "I'm m-m-m-m-make them comment, make them comment on MySpace, MySpace ... OMG (Oh My God) its MySpace, MySpace."
Then there's the purely social part of it: Instead of the antiquated teen ritual of talking on the phone for hours, MySpace members spend hour upon hour sending each other instant messages and short messages called bulletins.
But mostly what they do is cruise, big time, wandering from page to page in a tangled network that allows people to create links to one another's pages by naming each other a "friend."
The process of finding new friends — often complete strangers — is called "friending." And for many teens, it's the glue that makes them stick with MySpace.