MySpace doesn’t just create social networks, it anatomizes them. It spreads them out like a digestive tract on the autopsy table. You can see what’s connected to what, who’s connected to whom. You can even trace the little puffs of intellectual flatus as they pass through the system. Things that used to be fleeting and private – the nothings of telephone calls and idle chatter – are made permanent and public.
As a result, an awful lot of people wind up looking at these conversations, relationships, banterings that they can’t take part in. Maybe they’re too old, maybe they’re too shy, maybe they just live in the wrong part of the world to ever really engage. Some might say good riddance to all that. Others might harbour a regret or two. MySpace might really be in the business of selling yearning.