Generation Z was born anywhere from 1995ish to 2010ish. They’re known for growing up in a world that always had smartphones and the internet. They’re anxious and depressed, have gone through the Great Recession and now COVID-19, and they’re usually on Tik Tok. I consider myself to be a member of Gen Z.
Eric Weinstein thinks that Gen Z doesn’t have a song. His generation’s song was Stairway to Heaven. And Eric Weinstein is an honourable man.
I think that Dr. Weinstein is partially correct. It’s true that we don’t have a song for our generation. However, this is only because he doesn’t see the bigger picture. Photography was invented in 1826. Films were invented in ~1895. Imagine someone in 1894 saying “this upcoming generation doesn’t have a photo style which represents them.” This someone would’ve just failed to see the paradigm shift in front of them.
Gen Z’s song is not a song per se. It’s the fact that their songs morph and mutate and change. Do you like Post Malone’s song “Circles”? Why don’t you listen to it slowed and reverbed next? There’s a completely different experience behind it. The same thing happens on Tik Tok. One person uses a song to tell a story, imparting the viewer with a feeling. Then, another person sings over the song or remixes it. This is used to create another feeling.
What this shows is that Gen Z is used to change, to mutation, to metamorphosis. It is their bread and butter. It is a result of the new technologies they have access to (ie. Tik Tok, editing tools on Snapchat and Instagram, etc) letting them create and express themselves by miming and mutating old messages, music, and ideas.
Now, I may be wrong here. Tik Tok shows you what you want to see. But I think that I’m right enough for a very large segment of Gen Z.