Tom, say it ain't so!

The Demise of MySpace Tom?

Tom, I know we haven’t always seen eye-to-eye but you were my first friend on MySpace, and so, in my book, that made us BFF.

But it troubles me, Tom, when I read today that the government has passed US House Resolution 5319, the Deleting Online Predators Act (DOPA). The act looks at how much a “commericial social networking site and/or chat room”:

  1. is offered by a commercial entity;
  2. permits registered users to create an on-line profile that includes detailed personal information;
  3. permits registered users to create an on-line journal and share such a journal with other users;
  4. elicits highly-personalized information from users; and
  5. enables communication among users.

Clearly this is aimed at MySpace!

So Tom… when I went to your MySpace page to see what you had to say about it… you’d been deleted! If this act is about “deleting online predators” well, I can only hope that this was a mistake, but… I’m afriad that, Tom, there’s simply no way we can be BFF if you’ve been deleted.

For whatever reasons.

I hope you understand.

Author: Chris Messina

Head of West Coast Business Development at Republic. Ever-curious product designer and technologist. Hashtag inventor. Previously: (YC W18), Uber, Google.

7 thoughts on “Tom, say it ain't so!”

  1. So you think this means that Valleywag was right about Tom?

  2. Unfortunately HR 5319 goes after things much broader than MySpace. It can easily be interpreted to be any social networking site or on-line community. Even CNN, NY Times, or any other site that captures an identity info for access is in the bulls-eye. This is a horrible pieces of rubbish that has the capability of impacting all of us working on or around or even using social sites.

  3. @vanderwal — I actually had a much more serious, angry and wider-scoped post that I was going to write citing the issues you mentioned but decided to poke a little fun instead. This really is a ginormous issue for the community, which, it seems, could be banned entirely from public bastions of education if it goes through.

    I think it is time to organize some kind of resistance given that the lawmakers seem to know jack about what the web means… or maybe they do, which is why they’re so feverishly trying to shut it down. It happens to be a little *too* Amerikan for their tastes.

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