July 20th, 2011 By Jack Morton
As one of the members of the Social Media Generation, I want to offer my own personal opinion on the subject — most specifically in terms of how use of social media differs amongst age groups. Although social media is a platform that can be used productively (for brands, businesses, celebrities etc.), as a youthful member of the proletariat, I use social media solely for fun.
I don’t like to admit it, but I don’t put much effort into the organization or appearance of my Twitter account. Although I definitely partake in the passage of interesting information on the site from time to time, my profile is primarily used to tweet about silly things; Ryan Gosling, nonsensical inside jokes, and uploading random pictures to yfrog.
It seems that older generations, who didn’t grow up during this explosion of social media, use it for – WAIT FOR IT – its intended purpose! My mother, for example, spends a lot of time composing well-worded, thoughtful tweets linking her followers to articles about the environment, the upcoming presidential campaign etc. Serious things! My most recent tweet, on the other hand reads, “@LeoDiCaprio leooooooooo”.
Whenever I try to poke fun at my mother for culminating such a serious atmosphere on her Twitter, she doesn’t understand my angle, asking why I would use this incredible social media tool for nonsense. My response? It’s more fun this way.
Although I can’t speak for my entire age group, nor my mother’s, I do believe that this is a common trend. Adults just learning how to navigate these types of sites take the instructions literally, as they are “trying to learn,” while kids skip the instructions and do it their own way.