Scandal in the Age of Acceptance

This Monday, we took a look at how Millennial attitudes are shifting their views on just what can be deemed scandalous in The End Of Scandal As We Know It. We also told you that though they may be changing, scandals will not become extinct and that new issues that matter to Millennials will rise up to take the place of the traditionally taboo public behaviors. For this generation, scandals will be made up of those things that Millennials find socially unpalatable, like corporate discrimination and cover-ups. In this world, there is such a thing as bad PR — because while Millennials are quick to forgive personal missteps and brand product and marketing failures, publicly aired opinions that don’t fit into their worldview are scandal igniters. Here’s a look at some recent scandals that signify the shift:

 

1. A&F’s “Cool Kids” Comments

Abercrombie & Fitch has had a serious branding problem and PR scandal on their hands since comments that CEO Mike Jeffries made that the youth retailer does not produce plus-sized clothing because they “go after the cool kids” were publicized earlier this month. The comments incited a wave of anger and reactions from consumers online and off. Interestingly, the interview in which these comments were made is seven years old, a fact that is significant in a few ways. First, the public perception of what brands are responsible for, how they should act, and the plus-sized clothing acceptance movement has changed significantly in that time. Second, Millennials have aged up and become more economically and culturally influential since 2007. Finally, the internet means that everything a brand puts out into the public can affect their reputation—even if years have past since the gaffe. Millennials, a generation that has been taught that acceptance is the…

 
 
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Millennial News Feed

Quote of the Day: “I haven’t had children yet because I need to finish school first.” –Female, 30, IL

Yesterday, Microsoft bought the company behind the wildly popular game Minecraft, and in doing so they’ve acquired a “multigenerational success story” and could be regaining some cool cred with younger consumers. It turns out, parents love the game, and many young Millennials and post-Millennials have embraced exploring the digital Minecraft world, hacking, building, and collaborating in the lo-fi game. (The Verge)

Yesterday, Microsoft bought the company behind the wildly popular game Minecraft, and in doing so they’ve acquired a “multigenerational success story” and could be regaining some cool cred with younger consumers. It turns out, parents love the game, and many young Millennials and post-Millennials have embraced exploring the digital Minecraft world, hacking, building, and collaborating in the lo-fi game. (The Verge)

When we asked Millennials if they would download another photo sharing app, only 17% of 18-24-year-olds said yes. Of course, if the right app caught on, they’d likely jump onboard to keep up with friends—but the truth is, it is getting harder to get consumers to try new apps. While people are spending more time on the apps they already have, especially music, fitness, and social networking apps, 65.5% in the U.S. say they aren’t downloading any in an average month. (Quartz)

Boomers grew up with protest songs as an intrinsic part of their musical culture, and sometimes like to criticize Millennials for their lack of similar tunes. But EMA’s self-released new track “False Flag” could quiet those complaints. The song talks about the experience of a generation “growing up in the shadow of 9/11,” and how that cultural turning point changed, and maybe stole, her generation’s future. (Flavorwire)

Apple’s iPhone 6 is of course the big smartphone news of the week, but while that announcement has taken over headlines, other brands are quietly innovating in the category to appeal to more niche mobile users. Panasonic has returned to the phone market, with the launch of a “connected camera,” a smartphone camera hybrid that is meant to appeal to those who are more interested in the quality of the photos they are shooting on the go than the phone features they can boast. (Engadget)

In 2013, the birth rate among women 20-24-years-old was at a record low, and it continued to decline for those 25-29-years-old. These low rates could be “here to stay,” and that might be a good thing for both Millennial moms and their kids. Working women are gaining more salary and experience with every year they delay motherhood, and their future children could have greater opportunities and even a higher lifetime income. (Bloomberg)

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