Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Generation gap a myth?

I read with lots of interest Kate Carruther's post last week about the Real Generation Gap. She wrote that she's not entirely convinced by the oft-quoted generation gap differences between Boomers, X, Y and now iGen and I totally agree. While generational differences are a great way to explain some trends you really can't categorise people (and especially their attitudes towards technology) by their year of birth.

Kate says, "In both my work and personal life I am seeing the development of a different kind of generation gap, and it is not one that is age based. Rather it is about the individual’s relationship to technology and their willingness or desire to become and to remain connected." Frankly I couldn't agree more. As a Gen Y-er who's reasonably close to the Gen-X cusp I take pride in my embracing of the internet culture but equally I know several people younger than me (or indeed my own age) who can think of nothing worse than their life being portrayed on facebook or writing a blog that reveals their thoughts to the world. And in the same breath I say that there are heaps upon heaps upon heaps of active bloggers and social media gurus who love this internet connected culture are (dare I say it) well beyond the Gen Y birth year cut off! Kate refers to this phenomenon as the real digital divide and explains it not as a gap but rather a "continuum of connectedness". So where do you think you fit?

(McCrindle Research sets out a diagram of the generations in its report 'Seriously Cool' so for those needing a refresher it's below)

1 comment:

  1. Really interesting and I agree.

    My grandad is 87 (I think) and is one of my most regular readers on my personal blog. Plus he almost stalks me in his efforts to catch me on Skype for a chat.

    It's definitely not about age.