Forget Millennials - Generation Z is the group of people that are front and center of culture right now. Gen Z is the group of people born after 1996 and are pretty ethnically diverse. 14 per cent are Black, 6 per cent are Asian, and 52 per cent are non-Hispanic white - while 4 per cent are of different racial backgrounds or are two or more races.
They turn out to vote, they’re the largest generation entering the workforce, and they are deeply driven by security when it comes to money and benefits with a job.
Despite their drive, creativity, and ability to work independently, some people on Reddit have speculated that they may face some very unique problems.
Check out the list below of some things people think Gen Z could experience.
An unprecedented privacy landscape
The ability to share what you want on social media is great, but we must still be aware that what we put online could resurge.
“This was a problem even before the next generation came to be. It is frightening to know that your whole life can be revealed online to millions of people despite being a different person than you are right now. The former edgy teenager/twentysomethings of yesteryear had matured into a fine adult,” said one user about sharing every personal detail of yourself online - both willingly and unwillingly.
Broken dreams of becoming an influencer
“I’m scared to admit but I feel like a lot of Gen z will realize not everyone can be an influencer and there’s gonna be a lot of debt,” wrote one. It’s a fair point. The best online influencers, TikTok stars and YouTubers make it look so easy that it seems like almost anyone can do it. And therein lies the high-level talent that’s needed to compete.
Those shunning traditional education and career paths to try to make it as an influencer have an outside chance of making riches - and a very real chance of ending up down on their luck.
Brutal gig economy economics
“Lack of job security. Uber and others like them are pushing the paradigm toward the gig economy. The result will be disposable workers,” said one pessimistic poster in a highly-upvoted submission.
The rise of the gig economy provides a ton of convenience for the consumer, but for those relying on such jobs to make ends meet, it can lead to a precarious existence which - in places like the US - can be particularly brutal when expensive healthcare is needed.
The creation of deep fakes causing mass confusion
From Eminem AI-bots recreating some of his iconic songs today to Tom Cruise videos, deep fakes are around in the news and social media, which is interesting and creepy all at once.
“Yep. Probably won’t be long until you can upload a full body picture of someone, front and back, and make them do whatever you please,” said one user about deep fakes.
“I remember back in school our teachers always warned us about how the internet was full of fake information and anyone could post anything on there. They told us we should stick to physical media as much as possible because it’s much harder to publish fake information. They thought we would be fooled by everything we ever read online,” said another on why physical media is better than information available on the internet.
We all understand why cancel culture exists. However, it seems that some people who are “canceled” still end up prevailing and carrying on like nothing happened.
On Reddit user wrote: “Oh please, ‘cancel culture’ is just a passing phase, it’ll get more nuanced and refined as it develops. Guarantee there’ll be a viral ‘cancel cancel culture’ thing at some point and then Gen Z will be all talking about ‘growth culture’ or some s*** and then the generation after them will get sick of that and do some other s***.”
On the other hand, some people were giving Gen Z props for attempting to educate the masses about why things are wrong.
“Things are getting better, not worse. When I was a teenager you weren’t even allowed to ask questions about social justice without first accepting all of the premises (yes, before you’d heard them), and even then there was a culture of "it’s not our job to teach people" - the younger generation are way better at actually trying to educate. Yes the "fired over old tweets" thing is a bit blunt right now, but it’ll get better.”
Self-esteem wrecked by Photoshop
Altering photos to your liking is a cool concept, but there are also moments where the technology could take a toll on your self-esteem
“I’m so glad I didn’t grow up with all these face filters, etc. It was hard enough just growing up in the 90s and 2000s with Britney and Christina able to wear low-rise pants and everyone else thinner than me,” said a user.
We’re running out of usernames to categorize each other
Instead of money and other material items, we pass down usernames' lineage to the next generation.
“Could you imagine it gets to the point where people are inheriting their grandparents/parents usernames,” a user asked.
Another user spoke on correlating a baby’s name to an email address for the future.
“I have multiple friends where the first thing they did when they picked their baby’s name was lockdown a Gmail account for them.”