Is #ThrowbackTuesday a thing? If not, we’re going to pretend like it is in today’s blog post. Our team constantly shares articles and news from the social media scene. One recent infographic that was shared really stuck with me: The Bitly Index Q1 2015.
Many of the facts seemed obvious to us working in social media…but what surprised me is that LiveJournal is still a thing. This got me thinking about how I used LiveJournal more than 10 years ago as a young college student. I was shocked that people still use it, though it does seem to have changed over the years. It also got me thinking about other social platforms, or ‘social communities,’ that were precursors to today’s ‘social media’ that we know and love.
Who can forget MySpace? Well, most people have, but I remember when this site was all the rage. It was basically the first popular social media site that everyone seemed to be using. MySpace hit its high-point of popularity around the mid-to late-2000s, with over 100 million users. In the Spring of 2008, Facebook came onto the scene in a strong way and never left….MySpace was left in the dust.
LiveJournal, the online-journaling site was popular in the early 2000’s (and apparently still resonates with some people according to bit.ly’s report.) When I used it back in 2001, it was less of a social network and more of a public online diary. Since then it appears to have a stronger focus on both, emphasizing the fact that users can search other online journals and find new friends with similar interests.
Where would I have been without ICQ / AIM (AOL Instant Messenger) back in the late 90s?! I’m lumping these two instant messaging programs together, though they were different in their use. Basically, AIM was where I chatted with my actual friends in real-time. ICQ was where I chatted with my friends…and random strangers in real-time. (Yes, random strangers. Don’t even get me started on the safety factor of this. Note: Kids, do not do this ever. In real-life, or online.) Nowadays, you don’t hear much about either instant messaging tool, now that Gmail Chat, texting, Snapchat, etc. exist.
Another social site to die a horrible death in the wake of Facebook, was Friendster. Friendster was touted as “The new way to meet people” which is what everyone wanted to do online back in the early 2000s. It was another big site many to my friends were using before Facebook came along. After losing its way, Friendster eventually flipped to a gaming site, and not many have heard from it again.
Now that I’m older and wiser, I love reminiscing about the start of social networking and online communities and seeing how far they’ve come in the last 15-20 years. What were some of your favorites? Tweet us @ThinPigMedia and tell all!