The Internet and Future Generations

Posted under: Digital Natives 5th of November, 2010

Almost every phone in the latter of this decade has been developed to have Internet capabilities. When I look back and reflect, it’s strange to notice how just this simple function has become such a useful part in our lives. Imagine 5 or so years back when you’re walking with friends and talking about movies. An older one comes up and everyone wonders who the lead actor is. Minutes leading to hours are spent with that question on the back of your mind, pondering who that person is. Although this is hardly the question which would provoke the answer to the meaning of life, it is simply a daily occurrence.

Now back to the present, you simply Google it on your phone. Want to book a reservation of a place your friends told you about? The Internet is ready and waiting. According to my baby boomer parents, my generation, 1990-2000 born, one of the attributes associated with us is instant gratification, and I can see why. Constantly we (definitely including myself) complain about what we have. Of course we are just teenagers, but with the exposure we have to the Internet and television of new and improving technologies, we can’t help but think, “Why can’t we have that too”. We download things from the Internet and complain it’s not fast enough. We install games and again, complain it’s not fast enough. Speed seems to be all this generation cares about, and quality is expected, though a little arrogantly.

Sure the Internet brings many great and positive things to the table, but what exactly is it doing to future generations? I think of myself as a more patient individual, but I cannot help but get a little frustrated when what I want is delivered slowly. Mail (or “snail mail”) will eventually be terminated as the younger generations call for faster and more efficient ways of delivery. A casual walk in a park may no longer have the same allure as it once did, adolescents and young adults preferring to stay inside on their computers. It’s true that not all teenagers can claim they have their own computer or laptop, but as schools introduce laptop policies for educational purposes, the idea is definitely catching on. I myself have my own computer and a laptop, though I could be attributed to the more nerdy side of school.

So although I cannot cover the entirety of the internet in 450 words, it brings many positives and negatives, and may become one of the major deciders in how future generations act, whether we like it or not.

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