Thursday, July 13, 2006

That Was Pouring Like An Avalanche Coming Down The Mountain

Everywhere and Nowhere

MySpace is big. Really big. Like Douglas Adams' description of space, the mind boggles in trying to comprehend its enormity. There are a lot of people on MySpace. Adults, teens, young children.

And sometimes they die.

MyDeathSpace.Com is a place for the obituaries of MySpace users with links to their profiles. From what I've seen they all appear to be in their late teens and early twenties. Murder, suicide, car accidents.

Now I'm not in any position to judge how morbid something is. Not that I won't, I'm just not really equipped to. Missing a few mental filters that most people seem to have.

So I'm loving this site. It's tragic, it's sad, and it's a fascinating look at lives snuffed out too early and a glimpse at the impact they made, if only on a virtual level.

Hat tip to Anne Frasier for pointing this one out.

15 comments:

David Terrenoire said...

Oh God, Stephen. This has to be the saddest site on the web. I could only look at two or three before the waste and misery got to me.

I have no jokes.

inkgrrl said...

I told you about this a couple of months ago... am surprised it took you this long to comment on it.

anne frasier said...

there's just something so strange about this whole thing. i'm still trying to grasp my own reaction and feelings to online death. i've been thinking of writing about a blogger who recently died, and yet i didn't want people to ask who it was because i didn't want the curious rushing over there. but she died unexpectedly. healthy, young, talented. her posts from the night before were still up. it's just a very odd thing -- but in many ways i think it's a good thing. the person is somehow still living on the page on internet. and it also makes you realize how personal a blog really is.

Kelly Parra said...

It does give off depressing vibes. But you can't help reading about the people on the page!

JD Rhoades said...

I know, Kelly. I can't look away.

JD Rhoades said...

Man, this is so depressing I can barely see through the tears to take notes.

darleene said...

I actually like the idea. It's better than letting the media spin your story, that's for sure.

Elizabeth said...

I don't know what's more upsetting. The obits or the Google ad interspersed in between each: "Meet Sexy Singles."

We live in a sick, strange world.

Kim Mizar-Stem said...

It is amazing to me how the internet has brought so many poeple closer together yet, it also seems that it has desensitized us somewhat to the tragedy and reality of death. I honestly do not know what to say or how to feel about what I've just read.

Stephen Blackmoore said...

I think that this site underscores the distance we have even with people we think we know. Online friends can be an outlet, and a support system, but no matter how much the virtual chips away at the actual, it will never replace the day to day reality that we all have to deal with. The baby needs to be fed, the bills paid, the house cleaned.

Or in the case of some of the people on the site, the demons still need to be wrestled with. I agree that the internet has helped foster a desensitization, even when new friendships and connections are forged. I've met a few people through blogging I would call friends, but god help me if I can actually do anything for them. They're across the country.

If anything, I think that the virtual distance that's been closed has created a greater sense of helplessness. I can't give a friend a hug halfway across the nation. I can't give them a place to be safe when they're hurting. At the end of the day, regardless of how many emails you get, you're still stuck with whatever existence you have.

And that makes these stories that much more tragic for me. I don't know any of these people, but I wish to god I could have helped them, or comforted their families, or smacked one of them on the head and said, "Pay attention, moron, the train's coming."

Everyone has a potential to be more than the total of their circumstance. I just wish more people could be.

M. G. Tarquini said...

I visit that page every so often.

M. G. Tarquini said...

Something I've been wondering, though. How does a Guy like This get a myspace.com account. Is internet access and email considered an essential part of the death row experience?

Stephen Blackmoore said...

I was wondering that as well, Mindy.

Because I'm a geek. and more than a little twisted, I did some digging. There are 14 murderers on MyDeathSpace.com. Some of them also have their victims listed. One of them has been executed.

The internet is a way to expand one's self. You may not be able to get out of prison, but you can still interact with the world. If the whole point of a death row inmate is to execute him, I don't see why he should have that access.

A law library, I can understand. Access to myspace, I don't.

Trace said...

I'm scared to go there now, reading all these comments :)

Elizabeth said...

Stephen, maybe you're doing more for your friends than you realize. Even if we are across the desert. Or the country.