is a website devoted to connecting the deaths of MySpace
account-holders to their news obituaries. It is notable due to media attention that it garnered over the practice of seeking out dead MySpace users such as Taylor Behl
and Anna Svidersky
It launched in January 2006, but did not receive national attention until March 2006. It was started by Mike Patterson from San Francisco, California.
MyDeathSpace.com receives between 15,000 and 20,000 unique visitors per day. Patterson has reported receiving "75 percent hate mail and 25 percent fan mail".
Due to its rapid growth and popularity, MyDeathSpace has had problems with availability. It was down for two weeks in November 2006 presenting viewers with the message "This IP address cannot be used for browsing." In December 2006, MyDeathSpace returned with the following explanation on the website:
"Wow, now that was quite an outage! But what and why did it happen? Well, to put it in plain English, we outgrew our previous host. We received no warnings from them; they simply shut our site down and sent us an email telling us how we've exceeded the capabilities of our hosting plan. However, they were kind enough to offer us an upgrade for a mere $250 a month EXTRA. We declined. Since we were caught off guard, we had to scurry to find a host that could handle us and our users. We were in negotiations with one hosting company for about a week, but at the last minute those plans fell through (expensive licensing issues). We attempted to use another host (which is why you saw the "coming soon" page for a few days). This also fell through because; well... they just plain suck. We're hoping this will remain MyDeathSpace.com's new home for a while. Happy surfing..."
On July 30, 2007, the site was refusing web traffic, perhaps due to a surge in popularity following a profile on CNN
The webmasters later posted a picture of the article on CNN.com and gave the following explanation:
"The Associated Press has written an article about MyDeathSpace.com, which has been picked up by ALL news sources effectively taking down MyDeathSpace.com. The traffic is causing the box to become completely unresponsive. Please stay tuned into this page for updates!!!"
As of 12 August 2007, the site is back online.
- Sand, Paul. (April 17, 2006) The News Tribune MyDeathSpace.com memorializes youths. Section: Front Page; Page A01.
- Purvis, Bob. (April 25, 2006) Milwaukee Journal Sentinel When MySpace users die, last words from friends keep their pages alive.
- St. John, Warren. (April 27, 2006) New York Times. Rituals of Grief Go Online as Web Sites Set Up to Celebrate Life Recall Lives Lost. Section: A; Page A19.
- Kornblum, Janet. (May 11, 2006) USA Today. Mixed emotions, reviews. Section: Life; Page 9D.
- Farnsworth, Josh; Sullivan Kerry. (May 14, 2006) Telegram & Gazette. MySpace nation: Reshaping way we interact. Section: News; Page A1.
- Noguchi, Yuki. (May 28, 2006) Washington Post Online Memorials Help Those Left Behind.
- Joseph, Claire. (October 17, 2006) St. Paul Pioneer Press. The DeaD zone: Whether exploitative or instructive, MyDeathSpace.com attracts the morbidly curious. Section: Life; Page 1C.
- Roeper, Richard. (March 28, 2007) Chicago Sun-Times Where do MySpace users end up when they die? MyDeathSpace. Section: News; page 11
- Associated Press (July 30, 2007) Web site a virtual graveyard - Web: MyDeathSpace preserves the pages of MySpace members who have died. (reprint by cbs2.com - Web Site Archives Dead Of MySpace.)
- Pietras, Jamie (salon.com) (August 5, 2007) Chicago Sun-Times The new American way of death; Internet Society: Morbid curiosity and ridicule have replaced respect for the deceased at MyDeathSpace , where is an open book -- even when you're 6 feet under. Section: Controversy; Page B1.