Pros & cons of myspace/facebook

 (Myspace.com)

(Myspace.com)

In recent months something interesting has been happening on the Internet. Apparently everyone and their mother is now on Facebook, literally, and in my case even my mother’s mother.

This sudden surge of the over 30 crowd on what was originally a social networking site for college age young adults has produced a wide range of reactions. From total confusion, to suspicion, to anger, to welcoming and “friendship”, it seems everyone has an opinion on the subject. But what does this mean for the future use of these sites?

Personally I find it rather interesting. I kind of think its cool that I’m friends with my mom and grandma through Facebook. It makes the long distance relationship with my grandma suddenly immediate, and when I do move away from home again, the same will be true of my mother.

Where this trend of older users of Facebook grows, it has begun to make Myspace, a similar social networking site where you can more personalize your “profile”, look like a place only for high schoolers. I still use the “space”, for my personal profile, but I have noticed recently that despite resolutions not to, I have begun to use Facebook much more often, simply because there are so many more users. And I most note that the people I see using Myspace are mostly under 25.

Again, where does this lead the future of these sites? Will there eventually be a clear separation in the age ranges on either site? But something that has me even more curious is how this will affect the many musicians who use these sites for personal promotion, I myself being one of them. And further more, am I being left behind as I have yet to join the newest phenomenon of Twitter?

Soon after its conception, Myspace boomed as the new and best place for bands and other musicians to build a fan base. With ease, they could post their music, and instantly hundreds upon thousands of people the world over could hear them, and the success rate of bands that used this strategy was amazing. Myspace alone has helped to push the careers of a handful of the more popular artists in the music world.

Facebook offers similar opportunities for musicians, but make things a bit more difficult to get the music to the people. While setting up profiles for both the band I play in and my personal solo musical career, I have run up against a point of major frustration. Facebook requires the artist to provide proof of legal rights to post this music. While this is a great security to artists, it also makes things that much more discouraging.

So how will the recent shift in age of users affect these musicians? That is yet to be seen, but it certainly could bring these musicians to the attention of a much wider scope of fans. There is potential to be very helpful, or have no real results at all. But negative effects seem very unlikely.