Tuesday, June 20, 2006

GiT Da GIsT?

I’m on the fence when it comes to MySpace.com. Freedom of expression and the thought and energy required to take advantage of it are things I admire and advocate. However, after reading just a few MySpace profiles I can’t help but want to distribute a dictionary and a copy of The Elements of Style to every person under the age of 30 with access to the Internet.

Actually, poor writing isn’t the problem (speaking from the rumpus room of my glass house). As long as I can decipher the bulk of what a person is trying to say then I’m happy, in fact privileged, to see how another person has decided to present him or herself to the world. That said, THiZ kinda CrAp makes ME WaNNA SKREEEEEEM! U prolly can GiT Da GIsT of wut iM tryin ta SAY, but WhY Wuld ANY-1 wAnT tA work DIS hard?

I do love all the photos. The glimpses people provide into their lives can sometimes be downright courageous. These gems are tough to find because of all the drunken or drug hazed images that don’t reflect revelry and joie de vivre as much as they display vacuous methods of killing time. It can be discouraging. And if you find these sorts of images posted by people you know or (God forbid) family members then it’s depressing. Honest and revealing? Maybe. But they still make me sad.

The look-at-me factor of the majority of MySpace content is high. But that’s to be expected. Speaking as a person who has had a Web site for over ten years, look-at-me eats up more than its fair share of my leisure time. But for some reason many of these MySpace profiles, with all the posing, posturing, possessions and partying leave me flat. Even if I know MySpace provides a wonderful opportunity to create and sustain a sense of connection or even community -- I can’t help but want to slap the 28 year-old who posts photos of himself drinking bong water and pissing on his parent’s gardenias in the head.

I’d like to provide links to some examples of these MySpace profiles but I don’t feel comfortable doing that. You’ll have to do your own exploring. Hopefully you won’t have to look long to find something beyond all the shout-outs and affirmations based on how cute a person looks in his or her posted photos. You should know, though, that if you’re over 35 you are not the intended audience. You are a voyeur, cop or creep. If you didn’t take advantage of an opportunity to create your own coming-of-age narrative when you were younger then that’s your problem. You’re consigned to ranting about politics or raving about your children on Blogger.

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