Lena Dunham Re-shapes the Meaning of Mainstream

Today's post comes from Ypulse General Manager Jake Katz.

Lena Dunham Re-shapes the Meaning of Mainstream

GirlsIn 2010, The New York Times published an article called “What Is It About 20-Somethings?” This identification of the “emerging adulthood” Millennial phenomenon serves as the creative seed from which HBO’s “Girls” has grown.

“Girls” has sparked as much discussion in the marketing/media community as it has among its viewers. Thematically, the show brings to life many Millennial concepts. In particular, the growing complexities of dating (it’s no coincidence an article titled "The End of Courtship?" ran the same week as “Girls’” premiere). Additionally, the show’s exploration of navigating one’s post-college path to success mirrors much of what our research here at Ypulse shows about how Millennials are realizing their dreams in a post-recession economy.

While much of the discussion around the show has been quick to point out its misses (a lack of diversity in the cast, arguably skin deep analyses of life from Dunham), stepping back and examining it from a few levels higher brings up a more important discussion. The media industry should quickly be decoding what it means for our perceptions, visions, and assumptions of “mainstream America”, that a show set in the most notoriously niche and infamously marketing trapdoor of Williamsburg is as relatable to 20-somethings as the more obvious “The Carrie Diaries.”

The elephant in the room has now been recognized. For every big brand that has learned to assess new ideas, talent, trends, and marketing through a lens of mainstream versus leading edge, could this be the moment we realize the gap between leading edge and mainstream has nearly dissolved? Maybe.

Let’s think about this for a moment. We know this generation of youth…

 
 
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Millennial News Feed

Quote of the Day: “It wouldn’t be Thanksgiving without marathoning a television show.” –Female, 31, NV

The Pitches are back. Yesterday the first trailer for Pitch Perfect 2, the sequel to the cult hit 2012 aca-awesome movie, landed on the internet and the buzz is already huge. The trailer has been viewed over 6 million times in 24 hours. Pitch Perfect 2 will be out in May 2015, so fans have a while to wait, but as you can see in today's Instant Poll they'll be ready to watch. (Slash Film)

Last week, teen singer Lorde taught adults some new slang “the youthz” use when she tweeted out a compliment to Kim Kardashian. Lorde retweeted Kardashian’s internet breaking Paper cover with the comment “Mom,” which many not in-the-know interpreted as a criticism. But in reality saying “mom” to a celeb is a common compliment, meaning “adopt me/be my second mom/i think of you as a mother figure you are so epic.” (BuzzFeed)

Bailey’s is targeting Millennial women with a global campaign that “celebrates the ‘power of female friendship.’” To create a spot that would appeal to a new generation of women, the agency team and production team were predominantly female. The commercial features women around the world going out on the town together and the brand hopes it will show Bailey’s has “a meaningful role in a girls night out…[after] having had been hidden at home for far too long.” (The Drum)

The maker of the infamous Hot or Not site is back with a new, unexpected app for new parents and kids. His latest project, Cakey, is a free YouTube app that allows parents to create playlists of kid-safe videos, and choose from lists that other parents’ have shared. The simple app also includes an option that pauses video and says, “Okay, take a bite” for parents who are using Cakey to convince picky kids to eat. (Recode)

Two high schools in southern California were shut down this week thanks to threats that were posted on Yik Yak, the anonymous app that allows users to see messages from anyone in a 1.5 mile radius. Reportedly threats “of mass shootings, bombings, or other violence” made through the app is becoming a growing problem. (Mashable)

The Daily Instant Poll gives you a quick snapshot of how Millennials are weighing in on the topics that are making headlines, but there's more to our mobile network of 2 million Millennials than what makes the newsletter. Ten of our most recent featured Instant Poll results are available to Ypulse.com Silver and Gold subscribers, allowing them to compare the responses of various demographics. (Ypulse)

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