For the last three weeks, we’ve been posting blogs about Millennials, Gen X, Gen Y, and Gen Z. What makes each generation unique and how can we understand them better? Well the first hurdle, is knowing what the heck a Gen Y’er is. And that’s a more complicated question than you might imagine.
Google searches are great if you’re researching a topic that the Internet generally agrees on. Defining generations is not one of those topics. Newsweek, Time magazine and The New York Times all have different ideas of what a Millennial is.
Here’s a quote from Wikipedia:
Demographers and researchers typically use the early 1980s as starting birth years and use the mid-1990s to the early 2000s as final birth years for the Millennial Generation.
Not exactly definitive.
At a certain point consistency trumps accuracy. So I’m just going to call it. Here is a list of generational definitions. If you think this isn’t right, feel free to judge, or even send documentation to the contrary. It will be a superfluous effort as I’m not changing it after this. It is carved in stone as the non- Gen X,Y, and Z generation would say.
Gen X: Those born between 1965 and 1979
Gen Y: Those born between 1980 and 1995 (Also known as Millennials!)
Gen Z: Those born in 1996 or later
Now that we’ve got that cleared up, let’s hear from our resident Millennial Sullivan Sednek-Simes. (He was born in 1993. Solidly Millennial territory.)
Phone Licking — Weird or Innovative?
By Sullivan Sednek-Simes
As a social media junkie (at least I can admit it) I’m constantly inundated with people’s ideas on basically three things – social issues, food, and popular culture. With Generation Z’ers basically replacing their binkies with iPhones, I’m interested to see how coming generations process and react to hot button issues.
Social media provides a SoapBox (shameless plug, that’s the name of the company I work for) for people to state their ideas and opinions with a real-time feed of reactions to those ideas. I think about the future a lot. Most of the time, I keep those less tangible thoughts to myself. The opportunity to guest blog seemed like a better platform to do some of this thinking out loud –less risky than my Twitter feed. So here go some of my predictions about the future based on pure conjecture. My own person time capsule (and way less messy than digging a hole in the ground and burying some tube).
Will Social Issues Continue to be Influenced by Social Media?
With this presidential election being as wild as it’s been, with new and not so new voters viewing and interacting in real-time (tweet) with candidates, we have seen a tremendous change in society’s view of a potential president or societal issue. I find myself wondering, will Google start imbedding brain trackers to test people’s opinions on a political candidate? Will gun stores be able to differentiate a customers purchasing intent through the use of technology? Or am I just getting too far ahead of myself like how people predicted the future was going to be in the 50s?
Is Food Sharing, Food Caring?
I’m looking forward to the day where we can virtually taste the food pictures that people post. How amazing would that be? Then someone else can start the “virtual” diet business. What if restaurants could potentially incentivize users to post their favorite dishes in order to give taste tests to a larger audience. You know the girl who posts pictures of every meal? Probably your friend’s girlfriend, that you follow just to be nice? Imagine being able to taste her shrimp scampi. With virtual tasting there would finally be a value in posting pictures of food. Until that day I’m stuck doing this.
Celebrities In Our Homes?
Holograms. Everywhere. I envision a future where holographic robots of our favorite celebrities can be programmed to help us with daily tasks. I can’t wait for a Kanye West hologram to help me pick out my outfit or to have Leonardo DiCaprio advise me on what movie to watch. Celebrities could then tap into the location of their hologram streams and target certain performances to certain fan bases. In less than 10 years we have transitioned from being able to see 2Pac live in concert, to a 2Pac hologram live at Coachella. All Eyez on you Generation Z.
We as millennials will have the chance to fuel the acceptance of technology by becoming early adopters of autonomous cars, and virtual reality. Generation Z will barely remember a world without these things. They will be the ones to change our world in ways that seem impossible now.