Social networking also-ran Friendster has announced it plans to delete all user profile content as of May 31, erasing blog entries, friend endorsements, and photos from as far back as 2003. The news has touched off a wave of nostalgia among former users, the New York Times finds. "Your emotions get wrapped up in it," says one man who courted his partner via Friendster, but stopped using the site years ago. “It reflected a particular moment in time in our lives."
Friendster, which was eclipsed by Facebook and other rivals long ago, plans to reinvent itself as a social gaming site. A group called the Archive Project says the closing down of online communities is "a critical cultural issue." The group is working to save some of Friendster's content before it disappears forever. "This is the everyday neural activity of a world, of a society, scooped up and saved,” the group's founder says. “To me, that’s completely valuable and worthwhile to make sure it is saved for the future.”