Back in the 90s, there were things like…
…VHS, or Video Home System… which was basically the predecessor of Netflix.
…and next-to-nothing storage facility like the floppy disk which could hold nary more than two to three megabytes of information.
For your information, whole games were contained within floppy disks back then, and now 2 to 3 MB of data would not even render current games’ leading protagonist’s eyebrow complete.
Fast forward to the 22000s and we saw progress.
For before Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and all other unimportant social media sites, there was but ONE.
The ONE social media site roughly equivalent to the All-Father of Asgard; Friendster.
For the unacquainted, Friendster was the OG of social networking sites.
The brainchild of Canadian computer programmer Jonathan Abrams in 2002, it came before MySpace (2003) and Facebook (2004) and allowed “users to contact other members, maintain those contacts, and share online content and media with those contacts.”
Sounds familiar ain’t it?
It was ultimately relaunched as a gaming website in 2011, in order to avoid competition with other burgeoning social network sites, and enjoyed immense popularity up till its eventual demise in 2015.
And this has been up on their site ever since.
Nonetheless, the love for Friendster lives on.
Or more specifically, a love that arose out of Friendster still thrives very much today.
An Uncanny LDR via Friendster
Meet Yan Xiaolan and Shakolin.
According to World of Buzz, Yang Xiaolan, “a 28-year-old student from China who was studying in Malaysia” met Shakolin, a Malaysian studying in the Syrian Arab Republic through Friendster 10 years ago.
That was when Friendster was still THE pre-Facebook, pre-Garena, non-gaming social networking site.
As luck would have it, they hit it off very fine online and finally got to meet after a year of online chat when Shakolin “returned from Syria to Malaysia and the two met in person for the first time.”
“Their friendship then blossomed into something more, with the two falling hard for each other” according to World of Buzz.
Fast forward to now, the couple is happily married and has welcomed a daughter into their family.
Initially communicating only in English, Shakolin has learnt to speak Mandarin and Xialan, some Malay over the years.
In an interview with China Press, Xiaolan spoke candidly about their relationship and marriage and even gave Shakolin a darned high husband rating of 98 points.
He lost two points because when he was still studying in Syria, he said he’ll cook. But he rarely cooked now that they’re married.
Not too bad a score for any average Singaporean who should know that that’s “A Star” banding.
Post Friendster, Current-Anything Era
Well, this story came about because there’s a poignancy and preciousness to something that came about unexpectedly.
In its inchoate stages, social networking/social media was but a baby birthed just and taking its very first few breaths in the world.
The air was crisp and clean, and its very definition undefined.
Would we still say the same for any of the (I presume) many relationships born out of the many and prevalent social networking sites now, I wonder?
That it’s as poignant and previous as Xiaolan and Shakolin’s story?
Or are they just mehh, common, and expected?
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