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Will Myspace Trump The Social Networks Or Fail For A Second Time?

Ask anyone who knows anything about the media and they will tell you that Myspace, the once-dominant social networking site, has been declared dead since as early at 2006. Myspace is like that one girl in high school who once fit in with the ‘popular crowd’ but tried overly hard to fit in resulting in people making fun of her.

Thanks to Justin Timberlake, teen pop explosion from the 90’s and early 2000’s, Myspace is staging a comeback by using the pre-timeline version of Facebook everyone loved. Just kidding about the last part. No but really, just last fall Justin Timberlake was revealed as one of the top investors in this forgotten social networking site, which became ridden by spammers, known as Myspace.

After Facebook’s easy-to-use interface and more user-friendly features won over the hearts of millions of online users, Myspace instantly became a thing of the past. This week, Timberlake and co-owners Chris and Tim Vanderhook presented the new Myspace in Los Angeles. According to Rolling Stone, “the site is now a crisp, design-forward presence full of high-resolution images and a horizontal activity stream.” Picture a specifically social driven music player and discovery engine, which looks something along the lines of a magazine that collided with Facebook all while intertwining Pinterest and Instagram within it. “The site now strives for simplification,” says Rolling Stone, “[and] instead of friends, followers or like buttons, Myspace users ‘connect’.”

It might just be me, but I think Justin Timberlake’s roll as Sean Parker, founder of Napster, in The Social Network got to his head a little too much. Possibly promising “artist-to-artist communication and collaboration, giving fans the opportunity to listen in,” all of these new and possible features depend on “the revived site’s success in winning over former users and a younger generation raised on the likes of Instagram and Tumblr.” For the time being, Myspace will remain invite-only; however, it is now integrated with Facebook, which will allow new users to sign in using their Facebook accounts instead of going through the hassle of creating/remembering a new username and password.

The question on everyone’s mind is, will this revamp really be newer and better? Myspace is the home to 5 million plus unassigned acts, who obviously will benefit from the in-depth analytics that will reveal where fans are listening from; however, is it just going to be an outlet for aspiring musicians or will it trump Facebook and Twitter, becoming the ruler of the social networks again? After a few months or even weeks of messing around with the new Myspace, it is unlikely people will make the transition from Facebook and Twitter, even with all of its new features.


Welcome to the Revolution

How far will the media go?

We live in a world where we are told fat is bad. Where even the thinnest women are still photo shopped.

We live in a world where we constantly worry if our husbands will leave us for someone skinnier or prettier, so we go to extreme measures in order to seem more appealing.

We live in a world where it takes a celebrity to come out about an eating disorder, which she has been struggling with for years, in order to gain media attention.

In order for other people to realize they are not alone.

In order for the world to know there is someone out there who is just like them who will listen.

How far will the media go?

Eating disorders are a major public health problem in our society today. Since World War 2, the mass media has increasingly held a higher standard towards women and their body image. There is a pressure put onto women to obtain the ideal image of “perfection”, which is nearly impossible to achieve.

The truth of the matter is women’s bodies’ change, as they get older. They fluctuate normally from water weight, which can easily be gained or lost in a matter of days or weeks.

This past week, Lady Gaga opened up about an eating disorder she has been struggling with for years, after she was ridiculed by The Sun, in an article headlined Porker Face, for showing a little “weight gain”.

Who are we trying to please, the media? I seriously want to see what those people writing these articles look like… I mean they are hiding behind a computer screen for a reason. Why do we let “them” tell us what is attractive or not? Why do we care?

I mean come on… is that really what our society should be focusing on right now? Who cares if Lady Gaga, who is normally on a strict diet, wants to go out, drink and * gasp * eat a cheeseburger once in a while…

This past week, Lady Gaga, tweeted a link to Caroline Rothstein’s video, where she performs her poem titled “fat”.

Rothstein is a New York City-based writer, performer, and eating disorder recovery advocate, who grew up in Wilmette, a suburb of Chicago. She expresses her 10-year struggle with eating disorders, stating how “she used to daydream about eating dinner without wanting to kill herself”, where she “played Russian Roulette with her esophagus”, eventually resulting in stomach ulcers, popped blood vessels and missing tooth enamel.

Gaga was ridiculed for not only this but also her weight gain. Honestly, though, this is what the media forces upon people. How far will the media go? When will they stop? Will they finally be happy once everyone is so thin they die?

It is estimated one thousand, plus, women die every year from anorexia and as many as one in ten college women suffer from a clinical or nearly clinical eating disorder, including 5.1% who suffer from bulimia nervosa.

Eating disorders is an incredibly delicate topic, which is why it needs to be publicized. Growing up in Chicago, it was rare to find someone who did not have an eating disorder. This is not to say that everyone was anorexic or had bulimia; but, going to a school where maybe 2 people in each class were over 150 pounds, there was a lot of pressure put on both genders to be thin.

Gaga makes people believe and realize they can be strong no matter who they are. Her page, A Body Revolution 2013, encourages fans to embrace and share their flaws. Someone posting a picture online of themselves, who would normally be perceived as “fat”, is receiving encouraging words from millions across the world telling them “don’t hide yourself in regret, just love yourself and you’re set”.

Is this her way of fighting back against the media for scrutinizing her? Or is she taking on the responsibility of being the voice for those millions who think they are trapped and alone in the battle?

Gangnam Style

Unless you have no idea how this whole social media thing works, but chances are if you’re reading this you probably do, then you’ve seen, Korean pop sensation, PSY’s highly eccentric and entertaining “Gangnam Style” video… you’ve also probably stood in front of a mirror while trying to master his fast-paced, highly sexual, horse riding dance…and if you haven’t… well… knock yourself out.

Yes… the video is pretty much ridiculous… I mean come on, these people are riding around pretending to be horses… but again… unless you have no idea how to use this great thing called the internet, you wouldn’t know that “Gangnam Style” is a parody in and of itself.

With over 250 million views, and counting, PSY pushes the cultural boundaries of Seoul, Korea’s richest, most eccentric, district, Gangnam, in a massively entertaining way.

For years eastern music artists have had the most difficult time making it mainstream in our western society… I mean I don’t see how… all they really had to do was put on some flashy, neon, clothes and dance around pretending to ride a horse all while making hand motions in mid air as if you were spanking someone. PSY… being the genius as he is… realized that in the US… *ding ding*… you guessed it…sex sells…. shocker there. He clearly used this to his advantage while also knowing that chances were we wouldn’t understand Korean… I mean how rude… but hey, any guy that can outsmart an American is A-okay in my book.

Aside from PSY’s ostentatious appearance, I really just don’t think his life is all that. Honestly… why would you want to sit next to a sweaty guy in a sauna, get down with some elders in a tourist bus or swim in a pool?

As I mentioned before, “Gangnam Style” is a parody and as with any catchy song, you can always count on College students to make their own videos showing how our lives are clearly better than everyone else’s…

Now this is what I’m talking about… The “Burnt Orange Tailgating Crew” should be the ones making millions… not this guy PSY,  who is clearly trying to one up us on the amount we spend as consumers… but really… I know The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, New Jersey, New York and Orange County could trump his so-called “Gangnam” lifestyle any day.

PSY makes it seem as if he has this lavish lifestyle… but who walks past a group of girls doing yoga and doesn’t do anything… you’re going to have to do a little better than that if you’re going to compete with us…at least UT girls grind all up on those frat daddies…I think we can clearly see who won this dance off.

Some might think that these UT students have this whole parody wrong… but oh no… it is so right. Who wouldn’t want to consume an immense amount of beer… not to mention doing a keg stand before a football game?

All satire aside… maybe looking a little deeper into the meaning behind “Gangnam Style” will do us some good. Although both videos clearly represent different cultures, the depiction of how much each society consumes is one and the same.

Both videos are over-the-top, but maybe that’s what we need… a kick in the face…or some weird dance resembling horses…  in order to get a message across. Maybe we don’t need to have the most valuable things or drink until we puke in order to fit in. Some might say that PSY is a ridiculous moron… or UT students are giving themselves a bad reputation; however, if you take a little time, on this great thing called the Internet, you’ll realize that  you can still have a great time sitting alone on a beach, in PSY’s case, or resting your head on your buddy’s shoulder in front of a TV at a UT tailgate. We could all benefit from trying to control how much the media brainwashes us by consuming a little less and maybe go back to the days when you couldn’t wait to play outside with your dog as soon as you got home from school, instead of playing video games… but hey, what do I know… I’m just another broke college student trying to get by in life…

Either way, both videos are quiet entertaining… so if you’re looking for a way to procrastinate or just to have a great laugh, I would suggest watching these videos over and over again.. or maybe just make your own parody and see how viral it goes.

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