7 April 2013

It has finally been impressed upon me that I am a member of the “Was Generation”. I used to be a member of the “Now Generation” or “Pepsi Generation”, but digital difficulties, like taking a cell phone picture and then sending it or having Facebook fluency or reducing thought to 140 characters has marked me generationally. Although I am still an “Is”, existence-wise, I definitely have “Was” tendencies. But I’m trying to trade those in so I can be a part of a “Can Be Generation” of digital wannabes.

The point was made, clear as Lucite, this week on a telephone meeting I was having with a web designer, who is creating a new calligraphy web site for me. My digital, Internet and html language is as primitive as hieroglyphics, but with a decent design sense, he put up with me and translated my analog thoughts to digital form. I was undone when I explained how I wanted customers to input their information to the site. Being from that secretive “older” generation I thought my site visitors would be put off by having to impart too much information.

What do you think the age of your clients will be, he asked. Oh, I answered, in the 20 to 39-year-old range. That, he said, is my generation. And my generation, he said without a trace of modernist bravado, is used to giving personal information on the Internet. We are, he said, without a judgmental air, less concerned with privacy. We do, after all, announce everything we’re doing on Facebook and Twitter. We log in and tweet and hook up and text and sext as normal as breathing. The info you’re asking them to give up will not be a problem. Well, ok, then, don’t let me hold you back, I told him as nonchalantly as a born-again Luddite.

Now, of course, I have to crack the mysteries of the “Acronymic Generation” and memorize what all those texting abbreviations stand for. I’ve got OMG, LOL, AWTTW, BFF, POP, MSG, LMK, WTF, B/C down pat. But I’m at the beginning of a long road. SYL.