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Today's Twentysomethings Are the Future. So What is this Wired, Tech Savvy, Socially Networked Group All About? FASHIONTRIBES POP CULTURE BLOG

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At the recent Society of Editors Annual Conference in Glasgow,  The Observer reports on John Naughton's key insights into today's twentysomethings:

  • WITNESSING THE BIRTH OF THE INTERNET & WWW Today's 21-year-olds were born in 1985 when the Internet was a mere two years old, and the first blockbuster game was launched by Nintendo: Super Mario Brothers. By 1990, when this group was in elementary school, the web was being invented by Tim Berners-Lee, and the first SMS text message was sent in 1992, when they were seven. 1995 saw the launch of eBay & Amazon, and in 1996 it was Hotmail.
  • SEARCHES & SOCIAL NETWORKING Along with instant messaging services, pay-as-you-go phone schemes emerged around the same time, giving teens the ability to have phones. Google's 1998 launch occurred as they they were becoming teenagers, with Napster and Blogger.com following in 1999. Wikipedia and the iPod appeared in 2001, and social networking in 2002, at the end of High School. 2003 ushered in both Skype along with the start of university, while YouTube (2005) emerged around graduation time.
  • DIGITAL NATURALS  According to Naughton: "These kids have been socially conditioned in a universe that runs parallel to the one inhabited by most folks in the media business. They've been playing computer games of mind-blowing complexity forever. They're resourceful, knowledgeable and natural users of computer and communications technology. They're Digital Natives - accustomed to creating content of their own - and publishing it. (Remember the motto of YouTube: 'Broadcast yourself!')"
  • DOWNLOADING MUSIC & GOOGLING  While this generation downloads legit music from iTunes store, they also stock up on illicit tracks, as well as editions of TV programs such as Lost. To "google" means "to research', and writing & reading blogs is considered a normal activity. Many Skype (rather than phone) their pals, add their two cents on Wikipedia, and are proficient at editing videos in iMovie or Adobe Premiere which they then upload to YouTube. 
  • BLOGS vs. PRIME TIME NEWS Of the 55 or so million blogs out there, this age group is interested in many topics which never make it to the prime time news. Consider some of the most popular tags on Technorati:  Bush, careers, college, comedy, Congress, death, Democrats, elections, Flickr, gay, Halloween, Iraq, Microsoft, money, Republicans, Saddam, Ted Haggard, vote, war, breaking-news, tagshare, YouTube.

- Lesley Scott 

(via PSFK; illustration: pageup.com.au)

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November 14, 2006 in Blog Report, Pop Culture, Weblogs | Permalink

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