When it comes to meeting new people and maintaining friendships, meeting in person is history. In the age of social networks, friendships are now only a click away.
Two prominent websites leading the way for social networks are Facebook and Myspace. With their distinct differences, users choose their preferred service and find ways to express themselves.
‘Facebook is nothing compared to Myspace,’ said 18-year-old freshman graphic design major Christina Balanesay. ‘You can’t customize your profile.’
Though they offer different ways of self-promotion, one thing remains constant, the urge for thousands of people to flood the websites checking their profiles for messages and comments.
Profile designing seems to be a defining factor for those choosing which is better, Myspace or Facebook. The ability to decorate a page is appealing to most, giving them the chance to add their personal flair.
Being one of the first social networks, Myspace has many more profiles and registered users than Facebook, but according to some that will not last for long.
‘I am constantly receiving friend requests on Facebook, it seems to be growing constantly,’ said 23-year-old political science and history major James Hermon.
When Facebook, the newer of the two social networks, came on the scene it offered many things that Myspace initially did not have. At first all users were required to have a university e-mail address to join, it was primarily a social network for college students but opened to the public in 2006. People have been joining ever since and utilize the website for conventional activities.
‘It has very intriguing games that you can play over and over again,’ said 22-year-old junior psychology major Hardy Aguirre. ‘It has a lot of cool applications and can become addicting.’
Facebook gives one the opportunity to compete with friends on trivia, quizzes and puzzles online. In response to waves of people flooding Facebook, Myspace recently added applications as well.
‘I hear about local events on Myspace but don’t really use it much for that,’ said Balanesay.
Myspace has a large music community in which artists are able to advertise their talent. Like any form of promotion, sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn’t.
Many local clubs and organizations on university campuses also use the tools offered on Facebook.
‘I am the vice president of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Inc, Pi Kappa chapter on campus and I am able to inform CSUN students about events we are having,’ said Hermon. He discussed how he and his fraternity were able to go ‘Green’ through using Facebook for promotion.
‘One of the major benefits is that Facebook is largely student-based. We are able to cut the cost of making flyers by sending invites on Facebook and the less paper we hand out the cleaner the campus will end up being,’ said Hermon.
The organized look of the site allows users to browse smoothly and easily, finding videos posted by friends or writing and posting blogs.
‘I think the layout is better, its cleaner,’ said Aguirre. ‘Myspace is kind of dull.’
Social networks have greatly changed the way that people communicate with each other. As opposed to talking face to face or even over the phone, messages and comments have become a new source of conversation.
‘Socially I am able to keep in contact with many associates from high school, middle school, and even grade school that I might not have been able to if it was not for Facebook,’ said Hermon.
Despite the many opinions and differences between the two social networks, one common factor does remain, they are the new wave in communication.