MySpace Tom Reminds Us All Why We Chose Facebook

The Citizen's Guide to the Future
Dec. 20 2012 6:04 PM

MySpace Tom Reminds Us All Why We Chose Facebook

MySpace Tom Anderson
MySpace founder Tom Anderson in 2007, at age... um... who knows.

Photo by Chad Buchanan/Getty Images

Between that Aaron Sorkin movie, a few ill-advised instant messages, and a never-ending string of Facebook privacy controversies, Mark Zuckerberg doesn't enjoy the most wholesome of reputations these days. But like a ghost of social media past, MySpace co-founder Tom Anderson has emerged from the shadows of obscurity this holiday season to remind us why we all chose Facebook in the first place: because Anderson's site was so tawdry it made Zuckerberg's look squeaky-clean by comparison.

Anderson, better known as MySpace Tom because his face creepily appeared on everyone's account as their first friend when they joined the site, maintains a Twitter account that is often annoying, but usually not to the extent that it makes headlines. That changed on Wednesday, when he smacked down a random critic on the site so viciously that the guy ended up deleting his account. The sequence of events:

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That diss so delighted Anderson's followers on the site that they apparently hounded his working-class interlocutor off of Twitter altogether. For an encore, Anderson had this to say to some other random guy who called him "creepy" for still using the same picture of his younger self that graced MySpace a decade ago:

Tom Anderson compares his mug to the Mona Lisa

Screenshot / Twitter

Anderson, as you may or may not remember, has been accused in the media over the years of lying about his age, not to mention a slew of other creepy antics. On the plus side, he takes some snazzy Instagram pictures.

Zuckerberg, as it happens, was in the news this week for donating $500 million in Facebook stock to a local charitable foundation.

Future Tense is a partnership of SlateNew America, and Arizona State University.

Will Oremus is Slate's senior technology writer.