Only a decade apart, striking differences are glaring between these two batches of youth. We can say that the past two decades brought dynamic changes in cultural touchstones, social reactions, career and familial outlooks, as well as world views. In short the teens of the last two decades are pretty much different from what they used to be more than twenty years ago, yet striking differences separate the two “batches.”
The 90’s teens still carry with them some semblance of trust and high regard for adults and people of authority. This is in contrast to the 00s teens who are suspicious of everyone in a position to help. You have to show them that you care over an extended period otherwise they‘ll never believe that you do care. This is due to the fact that the present day youth experience greater autonomy in today’s fast paced world.
Teenagers from the 90s experienced the start of the technological boom, the Internet was starting to get more traffic, cellular phones began to be part of daily commune although they were still mediocre in size and the most of the displays were in black and white. Desktops started to become ubiquitous and hybrid cars were starting to be conceptualized. These are all welcomed changes, as the teen became more hip an sleek. Present day teens are quite the same but they see no negatives in technology and technology symbolizes change. They grew up with one hour photo processing, high speed Internet, PDAs and any new device that hits the market is cool until the next great invention pops up. This is potentially dangerous because they might not realize that these emerging technologies may isolate rather than connect people and diminish their privacy rights as citizens; and reinforce the sense of autonomy to the extent that it destroys family and cultural ties. What I’m trying to say is that teens of the 90s are less exposed to the perils of such rapid boom in technology compared to today’s youth.
Teens of the 90s have a strong sense of personal identity, they knew who they are and stand up for what they believe in. They don’t easily get rattled and jump into the band wagon of what is considered “in and chic” at any given moment. The teens of today revel in all available choices and dabbles in innumerable varieties. Thus, we have amusing hybrid teens whose music reflects one value, their academic dreams another, their friends something else, and their religious belief system yet a different twist. There is so much going on around them that they lose touch about their identity and become confused about their wavering interests.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying that teens of the 90s are better in all aspects than the teens at the turn of the millennium. I’m just trying to drive the point that the environment to which the two groups were exposed to are strikingly different. Each day the world becomes increasingly complex and young people today are as complex as the environment that they live in.