Myspace accidentally inspired a generation of teenagers to learn how to code
Raise your hand if your current career path was unknowingly influenced by the hours you spent trying to make your Myspace page the ultimate, unique expression of you, your interests, and your personal taste? Raises hand slowly.
What if I told you that the customization that Myspace enabled was a fluke, an oversight. Turns out:
Nguyen forgot to block Web markup language in user submissions.
His mistake allowed users to build colorful backgrounds and wallpapers and load them onto their MySpace pages.
Since those Wild West days of the internet, things have changed...for the worse. The social media platforms that have followed (particularly Facebook) have centralized, neutered, and homogenized the internet. We need platforms that encourage expression, and experimentation. We need to enable the founding, discovery, and prospering of communities that believe the web is something that can be co-created
"I think that when the web first started, everybody who was putting up a website, understood that we were creating it. Nowadays, people who were born into an age where Facebook dominated, I don't think they understand that they have that capability that anybody can innovate and create something new." - Howard Rheingold
The internet, software in general, is malleable and forgivable. Innovating on it isn't like innovating on building a house where you have to worry about safety and regulations. With the internet, you can poke at it, fiddle with it, and even break it without really having to worry about the consequences. It encourages play.