Sunday, February 26, 2006, 2:39:39 AM, Jay dedman wrote:
> but for whatever reason, MySpace still seems like a dead end.
> doesnt seem like it will last.
> I like to think that media we create will it means something
> in the future.
> I wonder if MySpace has that kind of longevity.

Unfortunately, longevity is not the point. Longevity is the kind of
thing that concerns the middle-aged rather than the teenagers who form
the backbone of a service like MySpace.

Most children and young people live in a kind of eternal now, where it
is assumed that things will be like "this" forever. It's not usually
until a little later in life, when you have experienced change, felt
loss and begun to ask yourself the definitive adult question "should
we have children yet?" that longevity becomes a driving force.

As a real example of this, one of my college students (aged around 17)
while talking about styles of clothing, casually expressed that, in
comparison to fashions from the past (say the 1980s and 1990s),
today's fashions would probably last forever. When I probed a bit
deeper, the explanation was that today's styles are ordinary,
whereas the others were just wierd.

This attitude, that the the strangeness and change was all in the past
and things will just remain as they are from now on, goes a long way
in trying to understand both the success of observably transient
phenomena such as MySpace, and failure of the many attempts to
interest young people in politics.

Keeping people in this passive, unquestioning, state is good news for
advertisers and governments, so many cultures have developed elaborate
ways of delaying the onset of adult responsibility.

Frank Carver

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