Struggles only those who had a Myspace account understand

Before Facebook, Instagram, and Snapchat (and after AOL chat rooms and Friendster had lost their popularity…sorry, old friends), there was MySpace. This beautiful little blip in post-Geocities 2000s culture was where those who had trouble with not being awkward in person could carve out a little part of the Internet of their own that showcased them as whomever they wanted to be.

On MySpace, we were equal – at least, by default. There were a few challenges we all had to work through to make sure we were representing the most effortlessly cool version of ourselves before we could be considered pros. One mistake and BAM, all our Internet cool creds could be gone in an instant.

So in honor of the MySpace “Top 8,” here are the eight biggest struggles everyone with a MySpace account knew to be true in the beautiful time period we call the early- to mid-2000s.

Picking your “Top 8”

Speaking of the elusive Top 8, going to the page of someone you consider a good friend and not seeing your profile among theirs was kind of like the feeling we got when we were picked last for a sports team in P.E. You’d have to take action immediately to make sure they weren’t on your Top 8 either, lest you look desperate. Same for your crush: You couldn’t put him/her higher than they had you, or you’d look like a total loser. Learning the fine line between “I care!” and “Eh, I’m cool either way” was intense.

Choosing the right profile picture

Similarly, perfecting that “MySpace angle” was a little harder back before we had front-facing camera phones. So was achieving the right effect on our photos, since we had to fiddle with actual lighting in the room and/or be whizzes in Photoshop. And on top of the “look” of the photo, you had to make sure you looked only slightly interested but also very devil-may-care. Shadows were also a nice bonus.

Picking the perfect wallpaper/background/theme

If someone had too much blinkiness going on in their profile, especially in the backgrounds (which made it harder to load for those of us without high-speed Internet), that was a sure sign that they were either really young OR great with graphics but just not quite “hip.” (I might have been one of those, oops.) Your theme and wallpaper had to stand out, but not be obnoxious, to get attention but not be uncool.

Having the right tagline and cool-but-not-TOO-cool bio

Summarizing yourself up in a way that sounded simultaneously genuine, mysterious, interesting, and “too good for you, random stalker, but also up for a good time I guess” was not easy, let me tell you. I used a lot of song lyrics and a lot of quotes from Closer and Garden State, I won’t lie. Not so cool in hindsight (even though I will never not love Closer, as depressing of a movie as it is).

Crossing your fingers for that blinking “New Message!” icon

Remember the feeling of your heart jumping into your throat when you saw that you had a new message after signing in? This was when texting wasn’t quite as common as it is now, so it was kind of a big deal. Like OMG WHO IS IT FROM!? Hopefully your crush, but sometimes it was just from a dude in a band you went to see because your roommate dragged you. And you’re now extra mad he messaged you because he made you think it was the cute dude from your Comp II class. “BRB,” you updated your AIM away message in any font that wasn’t Comic Sans, “drowning my sorrows in a Subway foot-long.”

Choosing the right profile song

If you were gonna go emo, you couldn’t go TOO emo. Dashboard, fine. That Dashboard song that everyone in the audience cries during? Maybe not. Or you could just have gone my route and posted Goo Goo Dolls, because that’s how I rolled (like I said, I was kind of bad at being cool/MySpace).

Deciding which quiz results to post

If you took the “Which ‘Mean Girl’ are you?” quiz and got anything but Regina George, it was kind of a “meh” on whether that was worth sharing. Those Quizilla results were serious business – and a really easy way to clog up your page if you weren’t careful, so you had to be selective. Now, if it was “Which Fall Out Boy member are you?” and you got Mr. MySpace himself, Pete Wentz, all bets were off.

Wondering why Tom never changed his profile pic

Did he just not own anything other than that white shirt? Was that the best photo of him ever taken? WAS HE EVEN REAL!? The mystery of the ages, my friends.

(Image via MySpace)

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