Picture this: there used to be a day when everyone who was anyone was on MySpace. We lied to our parents and forged our birthdates, all so we could have the chance to spend hours perfecting our profiles. Was there such a thing as something with too much animation? And don’t even get me started on the mental turmoil I faced when my personalized mouse arrow clashed with the rest of my theme.
It was a simpler time, when friendships were defined by where in the top 8 you could be found. And everyone had at least one friend, even if it was only Tom. But MySpace was just the beginning, as I’m sure we all know. Social media has since exploded, you know it’s weird when your period tracker has a share button, and trends last about as long as a New York minute.
Here I’ve listed the top 8 social media trends that have come. Whether they’re over or not, well… I’ll leave that up to you.
I’m going to go out on a limb and say that this one website we’ve all crossed off our lists. Do they even have an app? As I’m sure we all know, MySpace was so fetch. Founded in 2003, it didn’t really pick up speed till 2005, otherwise known as our middle school years. Thinking back to the pictures I posted, I’m glad the awkward years are buried on a site that is effectively dead. I’m sure we all agree that it’s best the cutie in math doesn’t see the braces, scrunchie, and glasses combo. MySpace phased out as Facebook became more and more popular (think 2008). Yes, collegiates, we only had around 3 or so years vying for that #1 friend position..
AOL Instant Messanger, otherwise known as AIM, was my childhood. I won’t lie, kutestar94 ruled the dial-up connection world. Just remember, AIM was probably introduced to most of us when logging into the Internet meant no one was calling anyone. AIM, officially introduced in 1997, gave us all the ability to chat online without the fear of our parents hearing every new development that happened over recess. And while AIM wasn’t as personalized as MySpace, it did have some great perks.
From the animated profile icon to the background of the chat window, there were more than enough to keep this collegiate happy. And if you weren’t a big fan of Aaron Carter lyrics written over his face, there were always away messages. I probably spent more time perfecting my working list of away messages than actually being away. And most of these away messages featured the highlights of my conversations with Aimbots, like SmarterChild or Cupid.
6. Habbo Hotel
Does anyone else remember the hours spent on this one? To be honest, I was never all that great at this game. Outside of wandering around with a drink in my hand and getting hit on by creepy gamers, what else was I even doing? Come to think of it, I’m pretty sure I spent most of my time trying to get into guest rooms and private parties. Does anyone else remember doing that? Founded in 2000 in Finland, it’s actually marketed for teenagers (so we didn’t all have to lie about our ages). It’s still fairly active, so if you miss it, you go, girl! Let me know how it goes.
Essentially, a more futuristic Habbo Hotel, I think we all acknowledge the stress our virtual farms gave us. It’s embarrassing to admit how much time I put into harvesting virtual food for a virtual world, but knowing we probably all did this makes it a little better. But I swear, the sheer amount of requests from older relatives and friend’s parents made Farmville real old real fast. If you’re one of the few that still enjoys Farmville, but doesn’t want to admit it, Hay Day is pretty much the same exact game. Something social media teaches us: there are always new apps for old ideas, collegiates.
What I like to think of as Spotify and 8Track’s adorable grandfather, Pandora was how I heard all of my music a few years back. The lazy and free way to listen to music, it was the first music media to give us the ability to control and customize multiple playlists. Yeah, the ads were annoying, but could always be muted! I don’t think anything was quite as bad as getting the notification that you had skipped too many tracks in the allotted hour. Because this announcement would always be followed by some song that I absolutely abhorred; and try as I might, hitting the thumbs down no longer skipped the song for me. These first world problems really gave me difficulty, especially if Complicated by Avril Lavigne somehow managed to invade my workout playlist. Nothing quite kills an uphill jog faster than a moody throwback.
3. Flickr (and Livejournal)
I’ll admit, I didn’t even know this was still a thing. It is! It looks completely different to me, but seems to function the same way. And in the world of Instagram and even Snapchat, I’m not sure we can really handle an older site limping to keep up, but I’m glad to see they’re still trying. In fact, turns out flickr can actually be used as a free back-up for photos (ie those pictures you want to save, but won’t post on Facebook). On that note, maybe Flickr isn’t dead, girls. I know I can’t way no to free storage!
However, back in the mid 2000s, I knew Flickr as a place to find photos. Where else would I find images for all my seemingly ridiculous angsty Livejournal posts about being upstaged in gym class or being stuck in detention?
Some days, I think Snapchat is dead. Other days, I’m avidly enjoying the late night photos in sketchy frat basements. So while Snapchat may not be so last week, I’d say we might be moving on. Where to? That I’m not too sure of.
Truly the most embarrassing photo of my entire existence comes directly from this gem of a site. Maybe even the top 5 worst photos can all be claimed by this site’s influence on me. It was intoxicating, and I’m sure I wasn’t the only one fooling around with the endless fonts and sizes. Why shouldn’t my cat be virtually adorned with an oversized crown and scepter? And clearly, the trashy “emo chic” photo frames were key for every fashionable girl. Sadly, Picnik was closed for undisclosed reasons, so we can no longer edit our photos with such ridiculous fervor. But thank you, Picnik, for prepping me for a lifetime of filters and artsy edits.