Responding To Kaiser's Generation M2 Study

Lots of chatter today around the study, Generation M2: Media in the Lives of 8- to 18-Year-Olds, released by the Kaiser Family Foundation, and the finding that young people between the ages of eight and 18 devote just under eight hours a day to media consumption (which actually adds up to more like 11 hours of media content, if you take into account all the “media multitasking”). With hefty numbers like these and the rapid increase from the last time this study was conducted in 2004, it’s easy to spin negative a la USA Today and come up with provocative headlines like “Kids less happy as they’re more plugged into TV, music, Web?”

To the piece’s credit, it does use the question as a launching point for a slightly more nuanced discussion around (surprise) moderation and striking a balance between screens and real life, but with its overall cautionary tone, the repeated catch-all description of “media consumption” and “technology’  might as well be replaced with “junk food.” Overall it just struck me as a skewed way a looking at a much more multifaceted relationship between t(w)eens and media.

What’s missing is the flipside of this type of research. Both with the so-called “happiness/media” connection and its brush off of recent studies like Mediasnacker’s The Web Makes Me Feel and MTV Sticky’s Teen Age Clicks: Understanding Global Youth Culture, which cited music, TV and social networks as generating happiness and alleviating stress, and also with the far-reaching positive potential of new media.

MacArthur has also been funding lots of research about how all of this digital media is impacting learning whether formal or informal. Watching a show and then going to a fan forum and posting about it  or interacting with other viewers during the show online is much different than…

 
 

Want to talk to us about the article
or dive into a custom study?


Millennial News Feed

Quote of the Day: "My favorite show is New Girl  because it makes me feel like I'm hanging out with my friends. It's so funny, relatable, and relaxed. It's also convenient to watch for free on the Fox website.”—Female, 20, IL

Millennials would rather lose their ability to make phone calls than delete their Snapchat—according to a new study from live chat provider LivePerson. When asked about the one app they would not want to lose on their phones, 35% of 18-24-year-olds chose text, 17% chose Snapchat, and 14% chose phone. According to a 2013 Wall Street Journal article, picking up the phone is seen more as “an interruption” by the generation, and our Talk the Talk trend revealed that 38% of 13-33-year-olds prefer to communicate with friends and family with text messages and chat apps. (Business Insider)  

Today’s young females are facing the same obstacles at work their mothers did. A McKinsey & Co. and LeanIn.Org study found that 23% of employed Millennial women believe “their gender has prevented them from getting ahead at work”—only 3% less than older females. And while younger female workers are more ambitious than older women, “the difference between the share of men and women saying they want to be a top executive” is almost the same among Millennials and older employees. Many Millennial females are taking non-traditional employment paths like to take control of their career paths and advance quicker. (The Wall Street Journal

What are Millennials spending their money on? Coffee, kale, fantasy football, and strippers. An analysis of mobile payments made on Venmo found the top spending categories among users—many 18-34-years-old—are food, rent, alcohol, “fun,” and coffee. Pizza was the most-used emoji and food was the most-used term, followed by Uber, rent, "fantasy" and bills. Kale ranked at 21 on the top 100 list, and strippers were number 91. Venmo processed around $4 billion in peer-to-peer payments in the second quarter of this year, up 141% from 2015. (CNBC

Samsung is the most respected brand among Millennials in the U.S., and they’re aiming to continually “[raise] the bar for technology innovation.” Focused on creating an experience, the brand is leading the way in virtual reality technology, with plans to “to incorporate gesture and motion tracking enabling users to interact in virtual environments without having to use a controller.” They’ve worked on VR projects with VICE, and recently staged an interactive VR experience at Lollapolooza, which allowed festival attendees to livestream performances and try out 4D surfing, skateboarding, hot air ballooning, and riding a roller coaster. (brandchannel

Immensely popular collectibles Shopkins toys will soon be on the small screen with their first ever movie. Moose Toys has teamed up with Universal Pictures for Shopkins: Chef Club, a direct-to-video movie that will be out next month. The story will feature fan-favorite characters, as well as new ones that will be added to the Shoppies Dolls collection to coincide with the movie’s release. Shopkins currently has 140 different collectable toy characters and an animated webisode series that has generated almost 100 million views on YouTube. (Kidscreen

Quote of the Day: “Master of None represents my generation because it takes the little things (going to a taco place) and expands on how the choices are debilitating.”—Female, 33, MN

Sign Up Now

Subscribe for premium access to our content, data, and tools.

Already a subscriber? Sign in.

Upgrade Now

Upgrade for full access to the best marketing tools for understanding the next generation.

View our Client Case Studies