James Walker and Torie Iverson
Editor’s note: Clovis’ James Walker and Rio Rancho’s Torie Iverson participated in the New Mexico Press Association’s annual high school journalism workshop last month. They wrote this story for The Future Press newspaper:
Many technological advances in American culture have helped teens in many ways. Popularity of different online social networks has driven people to use each service in different ways. Each social networking site on the world-wide web has different features that both teens and adults prefer.
James: I prefer Facebook because of the cool features and notifications.
Torie: I prefer MySpace because I find it easier to operate and there are not so many fan clubs and other apps that are unimportant. I also do not like how Facebook notifies you on other people’s actions. I do not need to know that someone commented on a friend’s status or commented on their pictures.
James: I think the notification on friends’ status is helpful because it keeps everyone that was in the conversation up to date on the situation. I will agree that pictures are easier to navigate in MySpace, but where Facebook really shines is the compatibility with phones like the Motorola Droid. If you link your Facebook account with your Droid or other Android operating phones, your contacts automatically update with Facebook feeds and pictures right into your contact info, thusly keeping you updated on friends 24/7.
Torie: I do not need to know what my friends are doing 24/7. The feature on the Motorola Droid and Android phones are useful but it is just one feature on the operating systems, so it is only a perk to those with those specific phones. Plus, I find it awkward to be on Facebook due to the numerous amounts of friends that happen to be my family. I consider MySpace my teen network and Facebook my family network. On MySpace if it is important or interesting people will comment. I like how most people on MySpace just stick to their own comments and messages and mind their own business, but on Facebook, many people tend to get in your business, especially family members.
James: I would have to agree with the Family Facebook and the MySpace Mates thing, but if you don’t want everyone in your business then why do you post it on the Internet? Doesn’t that defeat the purpose of social networking?
Torie: It just give me a chance to express myself without having to care who reads it or worry about who comments. Isn’t that one of the reasons why networks like this were created?
James: Not really, that’s what blogs and wikis are for. You can express yourself. MySpace and Facebook were created to connect with friends and family in a way you couldn’t do with telephones or other devices. Facebook in my opinion is just better because they did a better job of making features people like.
Torie: Facebook is so generic and boring. Most adults like things to be simple and easy, which is probably why they like it more. On MySpace, you get to decorate your profile to express what kind of person you are. I love how I can put music on my profile and change the font and change the background in a way that describes how I am in a brief yet creative way. On Facebook, all your profile displays is your “wall” and a couple things that you like such as books and television. I’d rather visit a profile that has pizzazz and originality than a profile that just has a white background and a description of a few likes and interests. We could’ve just stuck to texting, e-mailing, and calling if that’s all Facebook and MySpace is to you.
James: I guess we are going to have to just agree to disagree.