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Hello lovely friends, hope you're well.

Kids Today: If you hear 'Millennials' and think skateboard-clutching, avocado-guzzling dreamers who are to blame for basically everything, remind yourself that they start to turn 40 next year. Instead, the 'kids' to be down with are Gen Z: an awful term dreamt up, I assume, by Jay-Z.

Conceived between the Spice Girls break-up and their first reunion, today's teenagers find themselves in a world markedly different from how ours was. While it's foolhardy to characterise an entire generation, U.S.-based research is building up and offers us a glimpse at contemporary teenage.

Compared with preceding generations they're more anxious about money and debt, work and stress, health and personal safety. Car ownership is last losing aspirational appeal: more than half think of cars as no more than a means of transportation, and in their adulthood the majority expect it to mean autonomous vehicles. 70% don't have a licence, of which 30% don't intend to get one.

The subtle shifts are perhaps the most interesting, though: many familiar-feeling aspects of Gen Z's lives turn out to be quite different experiences from ours. Engagement with broadcast television is very low, for example, whereas 71% have a Netflix subscription. Many experience a completely different (and rather insular) media landscape from older generations. The purchasing power of Gen Z is also unprecedented: globally, their combined direct spend and soft influence totals $3 trillion a year. 😲

All this aggregated insight, however, can't tell us what its subjects can in their own words. The New York Times gets up close with Gen Z asks what's it like to be part of the group that has been called the most diverse generation in U.S. history, compiling a thousand engaging images and quotes. Rabbit hole alert! 🐰⤵️🕳
📸 Free gender-inclusive stock-image library: aiming for better media representation of non-binary folks as  not necessarily defined by their gender identities—people with careers, relationships, talents, passions, and home lives.

🎤 Gary Numan is crowdfunding his next album, and backers get to follow progress from scratch. He's a good egg is our Gary, and his Instagram is an adorable mix of touring and family life. If you can't name any songs beyond Cars and Are 'Friends' Electric?, give his belting last album a listen from 2017: it hit No.2 in the UK album charts.

🖼 A Portrait of Prepubescent Style in South Wales is an extraordinary photographic series by Clémentine Schneidermann with art director Charlotte Jamesnow, now on display at the Martin Parr Foundation.

🌴 Jersey's Fantastic Tropical Gardens was a fixture of my every childhood summer: nothing seems to remain save for this cheesy TV commercial. A golden age of hyperlocal TV ads in the Channel Islands, crowned by the booming voice of Major Benest. (Also, Major Benest and Me: the making of Benest's ads) 🇯🇪

🤦‍♀️ 19 Groundbreaking Discoveries by Women That Were Credited to Men from nuclear physics to windscreen wipers.
Lots of paradox in Gen Z too. The American Psychological Association's regular study into Stress in America reveals they're more concerned about political direction, but also least likely to vote. Adults might snort and roll their eyes here, but we are duty-bound to take note. Gen Z's high political engagement is likely to manifest as direct action, thereby placing them outside of the formal safety afforded to voters.

For example, Extinction Rebellion is a nonviolent direct action socio-political movement campaigning for action on climate change and related issues. You'll know them from Monday's stripped-off protest in the House of Commons. XR uses digital to coordinate and mobilise participants, and recently emailed followers:

"During the rebellion period running between 14th-28th of April thousands of Rebels will be coming into London to demand action from our government in the face of climate and ecological collapse. If you are unable to be involved on the streets you can always host in solidarity. Are you able to spare a bed, some floor space or even garden space for Rebels to camp in? People may be facing arrest and stressful situations. In this time a place to rest their heads and recharge is essential to the success of the rebellion."

Included was a link to a form to request or offer accommodation; completing the form implies agreement with a disclaimer releasing XR from any responsibility for either guests or hosts:

"There are no checks being done on the people who are offering or requesting accommodation. There is no endorsement from XR, we are just connecting people with a need and with people with space. XR is the 'middleman'. Unfortunately, XR cannot be responsible for the personal safety or property of hosts or guests."

This may cause the adults amongst us to shudder. The internet's relative youth means its infrastructure is unevenly developed. As the tech giants have also discovered, while you might be able to round people up, you can't yet easily look after them (see also: AirBnB has a hidden-camera problem).

There's no easily-implementable technology or policy solutions: the role of adults is to ensure Gen Z is able to make good decisions, including not to exclude themselves from existing infrastructure designed to protect all of us from the tiny minority with nefarious intent. ✊
Finally: defaultfile.name finds and plays YouTube videos that were uploaded from the camera without edits to the filename, thereby skipping past anything glossy or edited and opening up a whole world of often charming home movies. 📹

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