The Millenium Generation
I was listening to a discussion about MySpace on To The Point, which is my favorite radio news magazine - no one can match Warren Olney's fast paced interview style. It's aptly named.
Anyway, the discussion turned to the Millenium Generation - apparently people born from the mid-eighties to now. This group was contrasted with Gen X, which accounted for the rest of the post-babyboomers among us (including me I guess).
Now I distinctly remember reading a Time article when I was 16 that told me that the X Generation was over, and I'd missed it. I also remember a Gen Y- people born later than I was. I think my little sister was part of that (b. 1982). Now I find out that both of us are Gen X'ers, there is no Gen Y, and people born in 1985, who didn't experience widespread adoption of the internet until they were 10-12 years old, shoudl be grouped with the kiddies that have spend their whole lives online?
All this illustrates to me that trying to quantify and characterize people by the era in which they were born is very Sociology 1.0. We love to organize data like that, and there's certainly some merit to it, but we put WAY to much stock in it.
As for all this terror about MySpace - a few generations ago it was the telephone that was going to stop us from seeing each other face to face and let dangerous predators into our home...
And there's a lot of talk about how people can create an identity on MySpace that's different from their own... but isn't that what all of us do everyday in the "real world"? Are you nice to people that annoy you? Do you try to appear casual when you're nervous? Like you're having fun when you're bored? MySpace just gives you more control over your false identity - you've been creating it since the first time your mother told you to use your inside voice.