Compared to when I was growing up and a crappy Gameboy or impossible to tune in b&w portable telly were the heights of the technology accessible to the average teen, kids these days “don’t know they’re born” with their infuriatingly flippant use of PS3s, iPhones and what-would-until-recently-have-been-considered-witchcraft wireless broadband.
Recently doing the rounds is a fascinating US study by The Pew Internet & American Life Project which “studies the social impact of the internet, focusing on topics including health, teens, and broadband”.
It shows that kids are always online but instead of blogging they are on social networks such as myspace (come on, they’re too young to know better).
But does this herald the end for blogging, or is it just that they’re er.. kids, and haven’t really got enough life/work experience to blog about yet? Plus they’re not in a boring full-time office job which is the time when grown-ups suddenly discover blogging and spend all day reading everyone else’s blogs and writing their own in a desperate attempt to distract themselves from the pointlessness of existence. Right?
Eventually the younger generation (x, y or z? I lose track) will get fed up of status updates and LOLCats and the like and get the sudden desire to sign up to a WordPress account and vomit out a lengthy essay about a minor indie band or technological development that interests only them for 3 of their mates to skim-read. I mean, why WOULDN’T you want to be a blogger?
They will realise that there is more to life than uglifying their myspace page with more useless flashing widgetry than a Dixons store in the run up to Christmas, and instead do the grown up, professional adult thing and sign up to a LinkedIn account that will forever lie eerily dormant like a cyberspace metaphor for their own stalled careers.
The kids aren’t using Twitter either. Some journalists seem to consider this as irrefutable proof that Twitter is uncool. I beg to disagree – surely it’s possible that us adults, though clearly cripplingly uncool in almost every way, with all that laughable experience, expertise and accrued knowledge, might actually know something that the kids don’t?
Yes that’s adults – that much ignored demographic, which the BBC’s iPhone department have conveniently categorised as:
Mobile First (aged 30-40), Social Animals (18-30), Mobile Lifestyle (25-40) and the Addicted (30-40).
Via The Register (As The Reg point out, they didn’t mention what happens after 40 – presumably once over 40 people are too preoccupied with their impending death to have any interest in iPhone apps)
You see, these youngsters just haven’t realised the genius of Twitter yet. But they will. They will realise that they have wasted most of their life so far making inane X-Factor orientated chatter with their moronic friends, and instead sign up to Twitter where they can look at pictures of Demi Moore’s ass courtesy of her adopted son Ashton Kutcher or be the first to know that Jordan is auctioning off her collection of Peter Andre’s chesthair on Ebay.
So either you can read the report as:
- proof of a future where all adults will be perma-teenagers content with bullying, teasing and flirting with their peers on social networking sites from birth to infinity and beyond
- or you can see the differences as part of an overall pattern of people growing up and either settling for a cosily predictable Facebook account showing photos of their kids and weddings, or starting their own ineffectual digital megaphones through which they howl disaffected obscenities into the infinity of cyberspace (yes, a blog like this one).
And in the case of both, generally settling into life as a slavering, bedridden, and fundamentally uncool adult person.
Of course the internet is still in its infancy itself, barely old enough in the grand scheme of things to even have a bebo account. So all this is yet more pointless conjecture about what might or might not happen. Which let’s face it, is 90% of what blogging consists of. Maybe that’s why it’s going out of fashion.