Generation Like

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rabble
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Generation Like

Postby rabble » Sun Feb 23, 2014 3:43 pm

That's the title of the latest Frontline. I watch that show now and then. This one was about how the current crop of kids love that "like" button and want to generate likes, and how all those likes are stored by the brands, and how the kids are themselves part of the marketing process.

Which isn't really news to anybody who's been paying even a little bit of attention. But one part kinda threw me.

One of the researchers was talking about how the kids were happily chasing after likes and becoming super fans, and liked being part of the mass market movement and weren't at all worried about selling out. "I'm not even sure if they know what 'sell out' means" she says.

So they asked the kids. And the kids didn't know. "Can you give me some context?" "Well, you can sell out of books or shirts or whatever you're selling. Is that it?" Blank looks. One after the other.

Maybe some of the kids they asked knew what it meant and they didn't show it. But they came up with eight or nine high schoolers who had never heard the term and had no knowledge of the concept of compromising your value system for money. Which means that term has never been part of their lives, in school or home or on the street.

To them, it's not a compromise. They're all sellouts. It's normal.

I know there's still a segment of that population who knows what "sellout" means, who have a strong value system they don't want to give up for money, and know that the earth goes around the sun. But I have a sinking feeling that they're the minority.

Ninja
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Re: Generation Like

Postby Ninja » Sun Feb 23, 2014 4:16 pm

I never knew what sellout meant. Kids used to get accused of being sellouts for listening to Green Day instead of Filth when I was a teenager. Kids were sellouts for getting jobs. Any legal job made you a sell out. Getting paid to make music, so you could actually practice an art full-time, meant selling out. Wearing the wrong shoes meant selling out to some people.

But yeah, what you're describing is selling out. I get it now. Things are getting weird.

snoqueen
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Re: Generation Like

Postby snoqueen » Sun Feb 23, 2014 4:46 pm

Selling out to me means compromising your principles. I think what is missing in these kids' context is anything resembling principles.

But if you think about it, what principles or values would they be selling out if they pick one commercial product over another? What principles or values govern the whole marketplace of stuff that's trying to attract kids' "likes?" What harm does it do them -- harm they can perceive -- if they like one brand, another brand, or both brands?

I think that's where the disconnect is located. It seems sleazy to us, but we have to articulate to the kids why. The question "can you give me some context?" was a real question.

The answer "you're letting these corporations use you like a tool" doesn't resonate with them because their reply is "and why not?"

I actually wonder if this isn't a brain development thing and they haven't reached a point of autonomy where they understand the difference between being manipulated and making choices.

Ninja
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Re: Generation Like

Postby Ninja » Sun Feb 23, 2014 4:51 pm

"There's something in their eyes you can tell they sold out, remember punk is more than teenage rebellion"
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A29hVLwMWXQ

Fuckin sellouts.
Last edited by Ninja on Sun Feb 23, 2014 4:56 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Ninja
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Re: Generation Like

Postby Ninja » Sun Feb 23, 2014 4:52 pm

snoqueen wrote:Selling out to me means compromising your principles. I think what is missing in these kids' context is anything resembling principles.


Boom. Roasted.

Kenneth Burns
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Re: Generation Like

Postby Kenneth Burns » Sun Feb 23, 2014 4:57 pm

"Frontline" is an excellent show, but I gotta say, if my worldview were informed only by stuff I saw on "Frontline," I would be even more depressed than I already am. Just the sound of narrator Will Lyman's voice reminds me of the many, many ways in which the world is horrible.

Ninja
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Re: Generation Like

Postby Ninja » Sun Feb 23, 2014 5:14 pm

snoqueen wrote:I actually wonder if this isn't a brain development thing and they haven't reached a point of autonomy where they understand the difference between being manipulated and making choices.


I think brain development is a real weak excuse. Adults in their 30s and 40s act like that too without compunction. This isn't some new phenomenon that kids have delivered, they're just reflecting the world they're brought up in, or the marketing they're assailed with. We should be so lucky that it only effect young brains. All brains are effected, even the adult brains make deicisions.

rabble
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Re: Generation Like

Postby rabble » Sun Feb 23, 2014 5:44 pm

Kenneth Burns wrote:"Frontline" is an excellent show, but I gotta say, if my worldview were informed only by stuff I saw on "Frontline," I would be even more depressed than I already am. Just the sound of narrator Will Lyman's voice reminds me of the many, many ways in which the world is horrible.

Yeah but in this one case, it has highlighted something I didn't know. I can understand one or two people not knowing what a sellout is. Most do, a few don't.

I am surprised that apparently, that has flipped around. With a few exceptions, an entire generation doesn't know what it means.

That goes a little beyond brain development or conditioning. Somewhere along the line,we seem to have stopped mentioning it in schools.

Donald
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Re: Generation Like

Postby Donald » Sun Feb 23, 2014 10:44 pm

People go through phases. It's not the end of civilization if someone has no clue about selling out. Maybe they call it something else now.

When I was in what was then called junior high school, the Beatles hit. Just a little before that, the Beach Boys had made it big. There was this big controversy about which band was better. I look back at that as kind of funny, but it seemed a serious concern at the time. Who the fuck cares? They were both good, but the controversy was a way to generate sales for the record industry in general. Same thing that happens now with the fake fights over rap artist.

Years later we baby boomers would fret about "selling out" over real issues, like war and peace. Somehow, "like" buttons doesn't sound like selling out to me.

rabble
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Re: Generation Like

Postby rabble » Mon Feb 24, 2014 9:18 am

Donald wrote:People go through phases. It's not the end of civilization if someone has no clue about selling out. Maybe they call it something else now.

When I was in what was then called junior high school, the Beatles hit. Just a little before that, the Beach Boys had made it big. There was this big controversy about which band was better. I look back at that as kind of funny, but it seemed a serious concern at the time. Who the fuck cares? They were both good, but the controversy was a way to generate sales for the record industry in general. Same thing that happens now with the fake fights over rap artist.

Years later we baby boomers would fret about "selling out" over real issues, like war and peace. Somehow, "like" buttons doesn't sound like selling out to me.

Didn't seem that way to me either till I saw how the likes were being gathered, stored, used, and monetized. But I think you are confusing "a person" with "a generation." It isn't a few kids who don't know, it's most of them. And no, they don't call it something else now. The concept itself is unknown.

Yeah maybe it's nothing. But while we're bemoaning low information voters, soundbyte politics, and political ethics, this is another little detail you might want to keep in mind.

Henry Vilas
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Re: Generation Like

Postby Henry Vilas » Mon Feb 24, 2014 2:02 pm

When I first read the title of this thread, I thought it was Generation Lite.

Enough said.

Stella_Guru
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Re: Generation Like

Postby Stella_Guru » Mon Feb 24, 2014 2:31 pm

Ninja wrote: This isn't some new phenomenon that kids have delivered, they're just reflecting the world they're brought up in....

True, they are at the mercy of the pressures and counter-pressures of a social order in its death agonies, and also, deeply embodied habit patterns which are very, very tyrannical. Most who don't "sell out" will revert to their social background when they experience the real hardships that divergence from type almost inevitably involves. Today's comrads eventually become tomorrows insurance agents. ( Love the music link you provided above.)

Madsci
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Re: Generation Like

Postby Madsci » Mon Feb 24, 2014 5:23 pm

Are these the spawn or the grandspawn of love children? Or maybe valley girls? Like you know...

Ninja
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Re: Generation Like

Postby Ninja » Mon Feb 24, 2014 9:23 pm

rabble wrote:Didn't seem that way to me either till I saw how the likes were being gathered, stored, used, and monetized. But I think you are confusing "a person" with "a generation." It isn't a few kids who don't know, it's most of them. And no, they don't call it something else now. The concept itself is unknown.

Yeah maybe it's nothing. But while we're bemoaning low information voters, soundbyte politics, and political ethics, this is another little detail you might want to keep in mind.


I think you're right. It's natural to try to equate new experiences to experiences in the past, but sometimes things really do change (often in unintended and unexpected ways) and it's dangerous to ignore that.

Ninja
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Re: Generation Like

Postby Ninja » Mon Feb 24, 2014 9:25 pm

Henry Vilas wrote:When I first read the title of this thread, I thought it was Generation Lite.

Enough said.


Those stupid children. Who taught them to act like this? Oh yeah, it was us.


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