A fascinating article about class and social-networking Websites

MySpace is still home for Latino/Hispanic teens, immigrant teens, “burnouts,” “alternative kids,” “art fags,” punks, emos, goths, gangstas, queer kids, and other kids who didn’t play into the dominant high school popularity paradigm. These are kids whose parents didn’t go to college, who are expected to get a job when they finish high school. These are the teens who plan to go into the military immediately after schools. Teens who are really into music or in a band are also on MySpace. MySpace has most of the kids who are socially ostracized at school because they are geeks, freaks, or queers.

Danah Boyd’s “Viewing American class divisions through Facebook and MySpace

(via one of my daily highlights: veryshortlist)

6 Comments leave a comment below

  1. I’m not sure how you feel about this, but this is what I think:

    I think there is definitely a pattern in the different users attracted by MySpace and Facebook. And there do seem to be some cultural/economic divisions at least from my point of view, but I find this article very poorly written.

    Apart from the poor articulation of what I can only assume are good intentions, the writing isn’t clearly structured, meandering, and imprecise in its use of language. It is also annoyingly careless and subjective, for something that presents itself like an analytical paper (in spite of the disclaimer of being a “work-in-progress”).

    I can’t deny that I have also noticed a difference between the users of MySpace and Facebook, but if one is to write in that particular tone, they better write properly. I don’t care how much of a work-in-progress it is.

    If you must, go ahead and publish sloppy, half-baked thoughts, but write it in such a way that it looks like what it is, and not like a research paper. So annoying.

  2. I love your blog, but I’m pretty surprised you linked to this bunk article. I saw it a few months ago when it popped up on Digg, and basically none of the “facts” she offers are supported by any evidence, save her own opinion. I can’t even believe this was written by a PhD candidate, I’ve seen better theses by high school students. It’s a very sloppy paper making reckless claims.

  3. So we should have waited for someone formidably educated enough to write an eloquent “political correct” version of these observations? So well versed, that the actual message goes unnoticed between the beautiful prose? I’d rather prefer a simple read that delivers some thought-provoking points.


  4. thats retarded,

  5. Not necesarily. There is a very big difference between writing casually and writing carelessly. I think there is a way to write casually without being wrong. And it has nothing to do with being politically correct or eloquent. A simple read is absolutely possible without writing sloppily like that.

  6. Fair enough.

    Seems I was in sarcasm-mode up there with my first comment. Sorry about that. I’d be interested though, to know which parts of the article are deemed careless bunk. English isn’t my first language, so this may be part of why I’m not aware of what’s been perceived as “bad” to you.