Communicating Via Tumblr And .gifs: The whatshouldwecallme Trend

Today's post comes to us from Laura, a soon-to-be sophomore at NYU who has noticed a particular trend among her generation. They're using non-traditional media for communication. When text messaging, social media, and the rest isn't enough, they'll invent their own ways to connect, which is what happened when two law students on opposite ends of the country wanted a better way to keep in touch — so they turned to Tumblr and animated .gifs. Laura explains their story, which became a cultural phenomenon, below...

Communicating Via Tumblr And .gifs: The whatshouldwecallme Trend

The multitude of ways our generation communicates today has been a topic of fascination for years now in the wake of new technologies that range from texting to Skype chats. These methods are simple, direct, and great for keeping in touch with friends or family that could be located anywhere in the world. But for two best friends attending law schools on different coasts of the country, the available communication tools weren’t enough.

The law school ladies, who insist upon staying anonymous to the public, wanted to find a way to stay in touch and entertain each other throughout the day. They found that they could create their own funny, often self-deprecating private jokes or tidbits about their lives using captioned .gifs — short, soundless moving image clips from TV or movies. The captions, which they wrote themselves either before or after finding the appropriate .gif, truly makes the joke, since it puts the unrelated content of the image into the context of their point. For example, a .gif clip from the evening news of a culprit running away becomes the metaphor for “when my sister tries to leave the house wearing my clothes.”

The two got a laugh from these Tumblr exchanges, naming it

 
 

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Millennial News Feed

Quote of the Day: “I want to buy a home in the future to be able to own and modify my own space. “ –Female, 32, NE

Apple Music is here, but some say that Millennials won’t pay for it. The new music streaming service launched yesterday, and will cost users $9.99 a month to stream the entire iTunes catalog. However, young consumers are adept at getting their music for free, and the CEO of CMJ predicts “for major music audiences at college level and younger music fans…they will be heavily inclined to stay with and find new ‘free’ services,’” (The Daily Beast)

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Earlier this week we told you about Marriott’s efforts to adjust to young consumers’ traveling preferences, and it looks like rooftop bars are only the beginning. The brand has partnered with Universal Music Group to bring music performances by rising and established artists to hotel lobbies. Jessie J kicked off the venture yesterday in London, and all performances will be free to the hotel guests. (LA Times)

Is the sharing economy hurting Millennials? Some experts are saying that while all this car sharing, home sharing, and rent-everything behavior is well and good in the short term, young consumers “are missing out on recouping the gains from owning appreciating assets.” The idea is that the share economy is delaying Millennials' wealth-accumulation, and contributing to their downward mobility. Ouch. (Time)

Our most recent trend report is now available! The Q2 2015 Ypulse Quarterly covers three major trends we see impacting young consumers, and includes recently fielded data on 13-32-year-olds, Ypulse’s expertise, the most relevant takeaways for brands who want to appeal to Millennials and teens, and tons of other insights. The Q2 2015 report is available to Gold subscribers, and one-off pricing is $1250. (Click here to contact us for information on accessing the report or to learn more about subscribing.

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