As you can tell, I'm using Blogger. One reason is that it's free. The other is that I've heard of it. There are a few others I know of. Microsoft has their "spaces" and there's SquareSpace (which is pay, although the guys who started it are from U. of Maryland).
But the one site that seems to have gained a lot in popularity is myspace.com, and I have no idea why. It may be one of those things, much like AIM, that once enough people were on it, then it became a deluge.
I suppose one thing myspace has that Blogger doesn't is a simple way to link to other people's myspace. Yes, I know you can do this in Blogger, but never underestimate making it as easy as possible to link to friends. If the page literally yells that you must do it, then you do it.
As far as I can tell, it does this two ways. Obviously, there's a link on the main page. However, that link is almost always a picture. So, when you go to someone's myspace page, you immediately see how many friends they have.
Incidentally, the founder of myspace is automatically a friend of everyone, which is why his picture always shows up. Clever of him, eh?
As I said, the first thing you notice is how many friends a person has. There's also, usually, a place for friends to put their comments on, so you can see how recent the comments are.
All in all, this appeals to the narcisstic, yet insecure teen, who needs to show off just how many friends they have. You look at a myspace page, and it is like looking at some yearbook, except in this case, it's more like, how cute or hot are your friends?
Point is, it seems to work. And that's odd, because LiveJournal did almost the same thing too, and possibly less gaudy. The one thing about LiveJournal is that it emphasizes the blog. MySpace seems to emphasize who you know, and lists. The blogging component, although it exists, isn't used, but it doesn't seem to matter that it isn't.
Oh yeah, I think LiveJournal makes you pay, where I bet MySpace is free, free, free. That has to help too.
Even though I find MySpace to look rather gaudy, it has done its job to attract lots of people. It goes to show you that emphasizing the right things can make it more enticing to people. It doesn't seem to do much original, but it's able to do the right combination of things that makes it appealing to a lot of people.
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