The youth of this millennial generation are often considered to be masters of the digital age and social media. While that may be, what does it really mean?
Millennials, those born between the early ’80s and 2000s, are often seen as entitled and narcissistic, but also tolerant and confident. We are the first generation to grow up with easy access to the Internet and with unprecedented access to user-friendly technology.
Unfortunately, this connection to technology is usually portrayed as a bad connection. People often say things such as “you’re always on your phone” or “this generation doesn’t actually know how to socialize face to face.”
However, social connectivity based on Internet technology does not have to be bad. Frankly, many millennials are tired of being accused of the negative connotations that go hand-in-hand with being a millennial; so it’s up to us to find the positive benefits of this connection and use them to our advantage.
Through social media and the Internet, we are able to instantly connect to people around the world at any time of the day. This gives us the chance to communicate with people we may never otherwise have the chance to keep in contact with.
Social media platforms, particularly Twitter, are used heavily by those reacting to live events, such as world tragedies, sports games, and other top headline news. On a smaller, personal level is ENC’s campus tweeting during chapel with the use of the hashtag “#ENCchapel”.
This hashtag allows students to comment on what they think of the entire chapel experience; there are nearly no restrictions beyond the 140-character limit. That can be potentially dangerous, since Twitter is a place for everyone’s opinions, but overall it seems to be a positive and honest outlet for students.
It may sound like a cliché, but the term “community” is particularly applicable to the social media context. The “#ENC4Me” hashtag present on all social media platforms gives us the chance to stay connected with one another through clubs, events, and sports.
Social media may not be a perfect environment, but our experiences all depend on how we use the technology that has been given to us. The digital connection does not have to be poor, if we create our own positive experiences.