Xanga: Throwback Thursday

Before Facebook and Myspace, there was Xanga. You might remember Xanga as an online diary you wrote in that people could comment on. We’re talking about the blog that let you customize site design before Facebook came out with the cover photo option.

Choosing a Xanga name was an art in itself. Like picking an AIM screen name, it was your identity in a world of comments, E-props, and passive aggressive entries about your Christina. Typically usernames contained the word “baby” “angel” “dream” “lover” or “cutie” or a combination of all of them, along with a number. Though middle school was a time for awkward self-loathing, when it came to Xanga names, you had no problem with confidence or calling yourself “CoolGirl143” and “RisingSt4r33”.

For some reason, because it was middle school and we were in the prehistoric days before Snapchat and microblogging, it was perfectly acceptable to post paragraphs of your diary entry and display it in public for all your “friends” to read. This included anything and we mean literally anything. Like some days it was just a detailed recounting of what foods you ate and how you were almost late to band practice and then you watched Friends before you went to bed. Then, because you were so popular, your friends would give you E-Props and comment on your posts with nonsense like “omg Mr. Granger’s cross-eyes freak me out TOO lol”.

E-Props were the currency of Xanga, before likes and favs were a thing. You could give either one or two E-props if you liked someone’s post, but giving 1 E-prop was worse than none at all. Like saying “Maybe” attending on a FB event is worse than not responding at all, it was a bitchy way of letting someone know you read what they wrote but it just wasn’t good enough.

Then there was the passive aggressive way people wrote in their Xangas. For example, you’d say something like “Some people are backstabbing lying bitches, you know who you are. My TRUE friends know who they are too and I will stick by them through thick or thin because they are LOYAL.”

Eventually, Xanga died and we moved on to Top 8’s and Facebook Groups. RIP blogrings and featured content. We’re thankful that Xanga no longer exists because unlike today’s millenials, we can avoid a permanent public reminder of every thought we had while we were going through puberty. So, we’ll forever remember Xanga in our hearts, but are just grateful that’s where it will stay.


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