Understanding social network sites: lessons from MySpace
Goodings, L. 2012. Understanding social network sites: lessons from MySpace. Visual Communication. 11 (4), pp. 485-510.
MySpace.com is an online social network site (SNS) where users build a ‘profile page’ to communicate with millions of other users all over the globe. MySpace users customise their profile page with words, photographs, pictures, music, biographical information and other visual/textual icons. There are a number of unique practices that are inherent to these new online social spaces that extend from the need to maintain a personal profile. For example, many users will regularly update their profiles with new visual or textual information in order to encourage future communication (a practice that will be identified as ‘profile changing’). MySpace witnessed a high number of people joining the site in 2005 but more recently there has been similar movement away from the site and towards other online spaces. This article takes an historical look at the use of MySpace in order to explore some wider issues in online communication practices. Through an empirical analysis of 100 open-access MySpace profiles, the author examines the use of SNSs in relation to issues of self, community and wastefulness. This work also addresses the ongoing need to blur the boundaries of how we understand the relationship between human experience and technology, particularly in relation to visual/textual, online/offline, reality/representation and social/psychological.
|Journal citation||11 (4), pp. 485-510|
|Accepted author manuscript|
|Web address (URL)||http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/1470357212454098|
|Publication process dates|
|Deposited||07 Dec 2015|
|Copyright information||© 2012 The author|
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