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Myspace (or My Space) is a free service that uses the Internet for online communication through an interactive network of photos, weblogs, user profiles, e-mail, web forums, groups, as well as many other communication devices. This all-inclusive service is sometimes called a social networking interface. It is an active site always updating or creating new features for their members. Myspace is also sometimes used to describe a user created webpage on the service. Members are usually titled as Myspacers. was founded in 2003 by a couple of individuals in Southern California. The person mostly responsible for the advertisement of the site is Tom Anderson. Myspace was created by a team of twenty-five people in the beginning. There are a couple of individuals that played a much larger role in Myspace's development than Tom; namely Chris and Josh. A little known and mysterious figure, Shane, was also greatly responsible for much of Myspace's early success by getting famous friends to join, bringing their fan bases with them.

Within months, the site's popularity exploded and the programmers were hurried to improve the site as much as possible. In early September, many changes were made just so that users could delete things.

On September 25, 2003, Myspace announced the addition of several major features to the site. Included were the first group profiles, the ability to empty the trash in the mailbox, a new look for the bulletin board, a mail indicator live anywhere on the system, unlimited friends, and the option to change an email and turn off reminders. Also, a number of bugs were fixed.

October 2003 brought new features such as leaving comments on people's profile pictures, hiding online status, having the ability to block friend requests, and approve comments before they could be posted. In November of 2003, Myspace added features such as Classifieds, picture ranking, and a way to find users by interest. The "Online Now" status was also added in more areas, and the Mailbox was vastly improved. At this time, users were starting to experiment with HTML, creating more elaborate profiles that attracted interest. Some users offered their help so that new and inexperienced users could also learn to customize their profile.

On December 18, 2003, Myspace introduced their Instant Messenger, for one-on-one IM communication between users. Some Myspacers have created their own IRC chatrooms, and marketed them as unofficial. MySpace added its own Chat Rooms in February of 2004. To this date, Myspace generates a large amount of revenue through promotional partnerships and sponsorships.

In 2004, musical artists were allowed to create their own profiles and were given the option to post streaming MP3s of their songs to build up bigger fanbases. Some bands even allowed the MP3s to be downloaded. The concept has worked for some, and less so for others. In early April 2004, new features such as forums, games, Advanced Browse, and a new Journal customization were introduced to the public. The games included the very popular Gold Miner.

On June 4, 2004, members were given the ability to create brand-new groups so that like-minded people could share a common bond. There are two ways for groups to add members. The moderator of any group can invite members individually, or members can join themselves by either word of mouth or by browsing the 'Groups' section of Myspace. However, some groups have gone under scrutiny by the creators of the site, with some posting offensive photos, which was a direct violation of the site's rules. Attempts are being made everyday to deal with these types of groups, and in the end the hope is that it remains free of offensive material. Other threats that have emerged within groups and the site in general are spammers and trolls, however trolls tend to vandalize the forums with HTML.

Fall of 2004 brought another small feature to the blogs. Users could now give "props", later changed to "kudos", to their friends if they were in support of them, to praise them, or just to give respect. Another name change came to the journals; they were then called blogs

Towards the end of 2004, and into 2005, Myspace gave the option to "event invite". Many bands are now using this feature to invite fans to shows, and it can be used for many other purposes. Also at this time, rumors of a possible shutdown of the site were circulating and to resolve this, Tom posted on everyone's Mailbox, saying "Myspace is not shutting down, and it will never shut down". Tom Anderson has a strict policy of running with anything that makes him money.

On January 27, 2005, Myspace introduced another new feature that lets members see if their friends on AOL, Yahoo!, or MSN are members on Myspace. After early teething problems this is now a useful addition to the site.

Myspace implemented another new feature with member's schools, that previously people had to show that they were alumni or students of. On February 8, 2005, all those who had entered their schools into the system were automatically assembled into a homepage for each school or college that they were either an alumni or student of. Members could now search for classmates with much ease, and in the process the homepages replaced some thriving groups dedicated to schools. The new homepages displayed fifteen members at random; all were students of the school, plus recently added members were pushed to the left hand side of the page. The homepage also gave classified spaces for people to sell textbooks, and advertise open apartments and spaces for roommates. Also those looking for these items or positions could request in their own section. The homepage came with its own forums, thus rendering the original groups useless, however there was no ability to add pictures, and unlike the groups, there was no moderator.

On February 24, 2005, Myspace implemented a handy new way for moderators to keep certain threads constantly at the top of group forums. On other sites with forums, these are known as "sticky threads", that are perpetually accessable to all users, rather than having to search through pages of other threads. For a moderator to make a thread "stick" to the top, they must activate what Myspace calls Pins; pinning a thread sends it to the top until it is unpinned. This feature is useful for those who want attention drawn to a certain topic rather than have it pushed down by others, or having to "bump" it back up.

March 28, 2005, brought the introduction of usernames that members could create for use in a new URL address. Other members who knew this address could type it into their address bar for instant access to their friend's profile.

Myspace has always had much trouble keeping up with new members, as thousands join daily, and the servers have undergone frequent maintenance to speed up the system. Ironically, all the maintenance had a tendency to slow down the site even more. Additionally, the creators of the site added a new feature nearly every month.

There are also allegations of political bias. Numerous "anti-racist" organizations are allowed in the groups section that profess violence towards "racists", and anyone thought to be associated with racism is banned, despite any respect for the rules.

Tom and the other creators have also hosted many parties in Hollywood, Miami, New York City, Chicago, Boston, San Francisco, Seattle, and Hawaii to support the site.

Many users admit they feel Myspace parties are nothing but commercialized events that feel exactly like a normal club night. A smaller population of users are irritated at the fact that Myspace never offers anything free to the users in return for the income they provide the site and it's creators through annoying ads.

Some stats from the site (as of January 20, 2005):

  • There are 20 forums.
  • There are around 300,000 topics in the main site forums.
  • A total of 3 million forum posts.
  • There are around 200,000 groups.
  • There are around 60 million group forum posts.
  • There are 5 new posts every second.
  • There are over 16,191,560 million profiles inside Myspace. (as of May 17, 2005)

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