Generations use social media for different reasons

Social media is everywhere. It’s a news outlet, a way to stay connected, and a form of employment. Different generations use social media for their own reasons. 

Lori Miller, Generation X, uses Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Snapchat, Twitter, and YouTube.

“I primarily use social media for my work position. Part of my job includes social media management,” Miller said. “I probably use Facebook the most. I personally love Pinterest for my own enjoyment though.”

Cheri Robertson, baby boomer, noted similar uses of social media.

“I use Facebook on a personal level to stay connected and in touch with family and friends that live in different parts of the country. It’s a way to stay in touch with past co-workers as well as old friends,” Robertson said. “Since the pandemic, we have attended our church every Sunday via Facebook too. I also use social media for my job to help promote events, as a platform to create awareness, and also for fundraising for the cause.”

As for Gen Z, Kolby Glasgow and Natalie Dearwester use Snapchat and Twitter the most. 

“I use social media for basically everything,” Dearwester said. “Talking to friends and family, looking at sport updates, and shopping. Small businesses do a lot of their business on a social media platform in today’s world.”

In terms of leaving social media feeling drained, Glasgow mentioned that her experience depended on the platform.

“I use Facebook and Snapchat for family and some friends, so I usually feel happy after I’m on those. I usually see the news on Twitter, which is kind of depressing, so I feel more upset after Twitter,” Glasgow said. “Even though the news is depressing, I still like to feel informed and read people’s views and thoughts on issues.”

Miller continues to log on for work duties. 

“I have to keep logging back on because I often handle several social responsibilities for my job. I don’t have the choice or the luxury to step away from social media,” Miller said. 

When thinking of how social media leaves Miller feeling, she equated it to watching the news. 

“Sometimes it is dependent on what is happening, locally, nationally, or globally at a given time,” Miller said. 

On the topic of social media, HBO recently released a documentary, “Fake Famous,” that has been in the headlines. 

This documentary shows how regular people with little social media following staged fancy photo shoots to post on social media and bought fake followers and engagement to lure in sponsors and brand deals. 

One photo shoot was even taken on a fake private jet for just $49.99 an hour.

“I think a lot of baby boomers have really gotten into Facebook as a means to stay closer to their family and their friends. I feel like Gen Z, which is my own generation, enjoys a few platforms specifically for humorous content. Some of the younger generations seem to enjoy Instagram a lot to validate themselves and others,” Miller said. 

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