'No one can confidently say he will still be living tomorrow,' the Greek tragedian Euripides said. Lest we forget that, the Net plays host to a bewitching array of death links. Fancily known as 'thanatolinks', they are named after Thanatos, the Greek personification of death who was a son of Nyx (Night) and Erebus (Darkness) and twin of Hypnos (Sleep). A morbid mouse click on a thanatolink can whisk you anywhere from suicide chat rooms to pet shrines and directories logging last words and epitaphs. But the death site grabbing the most glory now is that mausoleum of the ill-fated, MyDeathSpace.com. Officially not affiliated with MySpace, MyDeathSpace is decorated in graveyard grey and built around a map of the United States. Black tombstone icons mark a death. Click on one and you see the victim's face and a link to a news report on the death. One story recounts how Aaron Geisler, 24, committed suicide by burning charcoal and inhaling the carbon monoxide it generated. Another recounts how Levi Shackelford, 12, was hit by a car and killed while skateboarding to a shop at 2am to buy a snack. Another tells how Beverly LeDonne, 37, and her husband, Mark LeDonne, 42, drowned after trying to save their son. The cocktail of youth, despair and tragedy makes gripping reading and feeds into twin US fixations: commemorating the dead and prying into the lives of others. MyDeathSpace is all the more compelling because each news article features a link transporting the reader to that person's MySpace page. Think twice before embarking on the journey. Reading some goner's MySpace page is eerie, like ringing a dead person's mobile phone and hearing their personalised voicemail message. Thanks to frills such as video, bubbly music and dazzling wallpaper, few spectacles are less deathly than a MySpace page become a shrine by default. The portal to the memorials owes its existence to the 2005 murder of two daughters by their father. Fascinated by the tragedy, one slow day, San Francisco paralegal Mike Patterson tracked down the girls' MySpace pages. Patterson's research spawned a live journal. He envisaged his creation as a brutally honest cautionary tool showing teenagers how neighbourhood kids their age log off for eternity. More than that, it seems to have captured the public imagination. Associated Press writer Meghan Barr poetically cast it as a ghost realm 'where reality blurs into fiction and the living greet the dead ... They drift among the shadows of the people they used to be, and the pieces they left behind.' Patterson paints a bright future for his shadowy social network, commenting in an e-mail: 'MyDeathSpace is likely to grow exponentially over the next few years.' No doubt. Like the Death Clock ( www.deathclock.com ), the internet's friendly reminder life is slipping away, MyDeathSpace reminds us we are all skirting the edge of an abyss that swallows one person about every two seconds. As the satirical online newspaper the Onion ( www.theonion.com/content/node/39236 ) puts it, the world death rate is holding steady at 100 per cent.