The Internet effect on Generation Y (a.k.a Millennials)

WHO are they (we)?

Generation Y, or Millennials, is referring to the demographic of people born between the '80s and the early '00s. It mostly refers to teens and young adults and is considered the most tech-savvy generation. Most of them grew up along with the Internet and this makes them an interesting generation to study on the use of social media.

As a GenYer on my own, I can relate to the pros and cons of growing up with the Internet and being constantly connected. That's why I believe in the power of Millennials and will try to decipher them as a target group. Beware, there are many misconceptions that will eventually be clarified.

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WHY do they log on?

A huge percentage of Gen Yers logs on daily and for many hours. Internet has become a vital part of their lives and they use it on any occasion. It has replaced phone, MP3 player, television, game console, DVD player, newspaper, etc. This justifies the need for constant connectivity, either to kill time, to watch videos, to listen to music, to communicate with friends, or to meet new people.

WHEN do they log on?

If we were in the 90's we would discuss about logging on and off the Internet. Nowadays, it's only the location that changes while being connected, and the answers vary from person to person. Millennials know very well the meaning of constant connectivity and that's why they really make full use of it. Thus, it's not surprising that they end up using the Internet before going to sleep, while eating, while working, while queueing, while using the public transport and...while being on the toilet.

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WHAT is the Internet effect on Millennials?

Not every Millennial uses the Internet for the same reasons. Thus, the effects differ for each Gen Yer. However, the Internet is "responsible" for many positive and negative attributes of the Generation Y that grew up along the Net.

Growing up with the Internet improves your multitasking skills, broadens your horizons, allows you to discover endless information, to meet new people, to network, to keep contact with long-distance friends, to learn new skills at a lower cost, to be creative and possibly to be self-employed by turning your passion into a profession. The ambitions of Generation Y have been expanded, feeling part of a bigger world, with no limits and restrictions.

However, nothing good comes without a price. In the case of Internet for Gen Yers, constant connectivity may lead to addiction, loneliness, depression, lack of self-esteem, difficulty in concentrating (due to multitasking), but also in anticipation for instant results (starting from Google search and ending in life goals), arrogance (due to their tech-saviness) and narcissism (the Facebook/Instagram effect).

To be continued....