_A_ : ” _Oh hey look 6 people just followed me on Instagram. How cool is that_?”
_B_: ” _Man, I just have 200 followers. I’m so unpopular_”
Teens these days have a forever changing wish list and tonnes of demands. All that is needed to sway their ideas is a huge virtual cry about one materialistic thing, which practically everyone would follow. Blindly. According to me, one of the point reasons for a teen to adopt a fad would be, the need to be in THE group no matter what, and it eventually pushes them towards becoming a part of the mad rat race.
Who after all would want to take insults by being called “outdated”?
It becomes an absolute matter of pride, prestige and acceptance, right? (Haha, no.)
While there is a complete list specifying each of those fads being followed, I’d like to jot down a couple of trends, thanks to all those splurging teens out there.
Cool becomes kewl
Texting has become particularly funny. Pick up a teenager’s cell phone and you would be amazed to see the new rules of language being employed in their messages. Abbreviations and acronyms are a matter of past, what we get to see now is an absolutely new invention of short forms of words. It is almost like every alphabet being sent to the receiver via the text is costing which might be provoking the teen to shorten the words as far as possible. Apart from that exclamation words and adjectives just had a makeover with infinite number of “o’s” in good. So, every caption on top of a picture on a social networking site has those elaborate and ultra descriptive words like “That waaaasss AwEsssOme!!!!”
(How difficult is that for a grammar nazi to digest?)
This is one raging trend being found among youngsters today whether they are high on the travelling quotient or not. Having a selfie stick has become an absolute must, otherwise how is one to take a group picture of twenty or so people. It is about making the best memories for them and this comes as a rescue tool then. You might trek on the top of a mountain with nobody to take a snap of your entire group. It is here that a selfie stick comes in handy!
What upsets me more is, nobody reads anymore. Only 2 out of 10 people in my class would be avid readers, if I go to see.
People dismissively judge you on the basis of what course are you in. The new definition of ‘cool’ is what they see on social media. If I talk about Indian teens, they’d probably surf a US teenager’s Instagram profile, adapt his/her way and implement that. And then the masses will follow that. Everyone wants to do good on social media, like it’s the belief that that’s the only way to have an exciting life or something like that. I guess the root cause is the short attention span society. Google tells me that a study from Microsoft involving more than 2,000 people has found that the average attention span has dipped to a low 8 seconds – down from 12 seconds in 2000. A goldfish has an attention span of 9 seconds. In a nutshell, people are getting more and more impatient.
At this end, it is imperative for us to realise that there’s so much more than just living in our happy little bubble. We’ve become so blind, that we don’t even care about people anymore. Who talks about death these days? Who talks about suffering these days? We’re too busy being cool and trying to convince ourselves that we’re standing out in the rat race. I don’t know if I’m doing complete justice to my piece of writing, because even I am a user of social media, but what I know is, that I belong to that community of people who are called “nerds”. And I really really hope that these nerds do not get driven by these fads, not only for maintaining the sanity of people, but also for the betterment of this nation and the world, for we are the global citizens of tomorrow.
– Jinal Kapadia