Generation Gap

At work today my office manager went off on a rant about the inanity of Facebook and twitter. She has a teenage son and is recently being faced with the kid spending an inordinate amount of time on Facebook, and he has begun a twitter feed which was what set off the whole thing. As a good mother she felt it was her duty to follow his tweets, but when he tweeted that he was leaving Starbucks she went off. Why do people need to know that information? What possible good does it do to announce to the world something that trivial? Who cares what you are doing? I tried to help her, to get her to see that maybe he was tweeting about it because he was actually going to meet friends who were following his tweets and would therefore know that he was now on the way. She still didn't get it. She didn't in fact want to get it I think.

Thinking about this later left me in an interesting position. I've somehow started to see what generational gap I am fitting into. I know Facebook, in fact I have a Facebook account, but I don't really update it, and I don't participate in all of the games and invitations and announcements and wall-writings and things. I know twitter. From time to time I read someone's tweets, but I don't have an account there, don't feel the need to twitter myself, but I at least can see the usefulness and appeal of it.

I live an online life. I am here after all, and in several other places online. I carry my laptop just about everywhere I go. Someday in June when AT&T finally decides that I am worthy of upgrading to one I'll have an iPhone, which I'm sure will mean that my life will become even more net-saturated. I have always said that I will be the first in line when they finally allow me access Google through a cybernetic implant in my brain. But I am somehow in between the generation of the office manager, not understanding and hating the methods that the young'uns are using to keep up with each other, and the generation of her son, who is fully immersed in the tech and sees it as an integral part of his life. I don't really want you to know every 140 character moment of my life, and I don't really care to know yours. And I am still one of those people who feels that if I "friend" you on Facebook or elsewhere then I should at least have met you once or twice in a real life situation. Hopefully I haven't yet fallen into that myopic area where I throw up my hands and shake my heads at the "kids today."

1 Response to "Generation Gap"

  • addisonbr Says:

    My sister, who is much younger, does everything on facebook. When she has an event, she sends out the invitations on facebook (where I would use evite, and where someone a bit older than me might send a mass email, and someone a bit older than that would probably call or send a physical invitation). I asked her how she invited people who aren't on facebook. She didn't even understand the question. EVERYONE she knows and cares about is on facebook. Not having a facebook account for someone in her peer group would be like one of your friends not having an email account or a cell phone. You could work around it, I suppose, but he would be that pain in the butt friend who doesn't have an email address or cell phone.

    Good twitter story:
    http://sesquipedalis.blogspot.com/2009/02/finally-use-for-twitter.html