I’ll Be Watching You: Plurals’ Hyper-Monitored Childhoods

Plurals, often the children of Millennials, are being watched at almost all times from the day they are born, with tech acting as a second set of eyes for vigilant parents. We’ve spoken in the past about the ways that Millennial parents could change families, from bringing the baby to the biergarten to relying on lifehacks and tech to help them navigate parenthood. Now we’re seeing a new implication to this tech/parenting integration. Hyper-monitored childhoods are becoming the norm, moving beyond the generically over-protected upbringings of many Millennials, and making growing up a tech-supervised, increasingly quantified experience.

 

Baby monitors have been around for years in audio form. But today, video monitoring systems have become the norm on baby shower registries, and cameras have become as common a fixture above cribs as mobiles. Nightvision has moved from spy ware to parenting tool, with cameras that can see in the dark to make sure all is well in the nursery after children have been put to bed. Systems like iBaby Moniter send a video feed of baby straight to mom and dads’ smartphone—letting them not just watch, but also talk to their child from wherever they are. iBaby offers multiple monitors, and a two finger swipe on the accompanying app allows users to quickly change views between cameras throughout the house. Once children have graduated from the crib, whole house monitors are available, streaming feeds of every room to laptops and mobile devices. Though currently less common, it is not too hard to imagine that Millennial parents used to seeing their child’s every move might want to continue to watch as they grow up, even outside the house. Systems like WatchMeGrow put cameras into the classroom, equipping childcare centers with video monitoring systems…

 
 
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Millennial News Feed

Quote of the Day: 

Q: Imagine you just got home after trick-or-treating. What candy would you be most excited to eat?

A: “ALL OF IT! I may be 22, but I'm still allowed to act like a child once in a while!” –Male, 22, MN

Most Millennials don’t have a huge amount of disposable income to donate to charity, but they want to make a difference in the world—which is a big reason non-profits need to pay attention to them. For now, they prefer to give in smaller increments, but the size of the generation means that those micro-donations add up. They are also eager to have a chance to make a hands-on impact, so “more non-profits should consider how to get their Millennial supporters in the field.” (Huffington Post)

GIF-powered marketing is on the rise, and Netflix is taking it to the next level. Their new outdoor campaign in France is comprised entirely of GIF posters that will change depending on things like the weather and news events. A team will be creating custom GIFs from the shows and movies available on Netflix, which will then be broadcasted on the posters with an accompanying message. For example, if a team wins a big game, the GIF shown would be of a character celebrating, with a message about the victory. (Digiday)

It’s not news that college kids tend to drink heavily, but the reasons why they binge-drink might be more complicated than just wanting to party. One hypothesis is that today’s teens, who are growing up with high pressure to succeed and with less “unstructured leisure time” thanks to an extracurricular-packed schedules, just “don’t know how to relax.” Drinking provides a clear delineation between work and play, and gives them a coping mechanism for dealing with the free time and socializing that they just aren’t used to. (NYMag)

Modern moms and dads might be responsible for that steady feed of baby pictures on Facebook, and turn to online forums for baby-rearing support, but social media can also stress them out. A recent online survey reports that 60% of moms ages 18 to 34 (majority Millennials) say they wish they could cut back on platforms like Instagram and Facebook. Excessive marketing, annoying invites, and the pressure to present a perfect life are all reasons these younger moms wish they could unplug. (ABC News)

Chat apps have become mainstays of young consumers’ communication, which means that written messages are even more temporary than ever. But what if they wanted to keep those digital chats for posterity? Memeoirs makes physical books of WhatsApp, Facebook, and email conversations, which means anyone could “create a library" of their digital life. (The Next Web)

We give you a dose of Millennial insight on a daily basis, but every quarter, we zoom our lens out to look at some of the larger trends happening within the generation—and why they matter to brands. Our Gold subscribers have access to the Ypulse Quarterly report, an in-the-know guide to Millennials that synthesizes the major trends and stats we’ve seen over the last quarter of the year. (Ypulse)

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