Adult trends vs. Teen trends

Trends exist everywhere in the digital world. Social Media users gather information and receive entertainment to have a say in their conversations.. (Photo courtesy of John Thornton)

There are two types of ways that trends are spread: news, which adults use for information, and social media, which teens use to follow people. Trends are an idea that someone can follow, or they can be something that anyone can create. Why is there a disconnect between the two age groups? Adolescents are creators of content that other adolescents appreciate, while adults create responses, updates on their lives, and news.

Google Trends shows the top searches on google. As of the morning of January 16, the top searches involve scandals, celebrity deaths, and politics. Most teens use social media (Instagram and Snapchat) to get their daily news but don’t respond to it. Teens may know basic news: Trump was impeached, Apple’s 2020 lineup has leaked, and democratic debates have been going on. Using Instagram and Snapchat as their main news source, adolescents do not get the details that they need to accurately tell what is going on. 

Adults use Twitter, Facebook, and watch the news, to keep up with the latest events. In response to a certain event, adults use hashtags to step into the conversation and express their opinion. Most readers of The Mycenaean’s online news are adults — most students don’t know of or read our online news. 

TikTok is one example of teens taking advantage of being able to create their own ideas. Most adults take the opportunity that TikTok gives for granted, and they say TikTok is taking over the younger generation’s lives. TikTok gives its users two options: create their own “sound” or use other people’s sound. TikTok’s choices reflect the contrast between adults and teen trends. 

Youtube is another social media site that gives its users an opportunity like TikTok. Youtube is more widespread and includes informational and leisurely videos — which is why it’s one of the most used platforms on the internet. Youtube includes many genres for all watchers to enjoy: video games, vlogs, DIYs and much more are included in the service’s broad spectrum. Youtube is the median between the interests of adolescents and adults. 

“[The media] supply the stuff of thought, but [it] also shapes the process of thought,” wrote Nicholas Carr for The Atlantic. According to Envato, trends exist “through a constant cycle of innovation and emulation.” If the process of thought is shaped by the media, and there is always a cycle of information, why do some trends last longer than others? What is the standard for a long-lasting trend? It depends. Some trends last longer because there isn’t another “idea” to follow, and others are short-lived because there is something “better” to follow. The life of trends are completely unpredictable and there aren’t any standards for what makes a trend. 

The two types of trends that human society upholds have created a buffer on the internet. Teens and adults have different tastes in their trends, will that ever change? With the age and invention of new technology, different opinions will only change more.


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