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What Is Gen Z's Definition and Approach to Leisure? Why? Do You Agree With the Presenter's Ideas?

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One-in-ten eligible voters in the 2020 electorate will be part of a new generation of Americans – Generation Z. Born after 1996, most members of this generation are not yet old enough to vote, but as the oldest among them turn 23 this year, roughly 24 million will have the opportunity to cast a ballot in November. And their political clout will continue to grow steadily in the coming years, as more and more of them reach voting age. Unlike the Millennials – who came of age during the Great Recession – this new generation was in line to inherit a strong economy with record-low unemployment. That has all changed now, as COVID-19 has reshaped the country’s social, political and economic landscape. Instead of looking ahead to a world of opportunities, Gen Z now peers into an uncertain future.

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Long before the term “influencer” was coined, young people played that social role by creating and interpreting trends. Now a new generation of influencers has come on the scene. Members of Gen Z—loosely, people born from 1995 to 2010—are true digital natives: from earliest youth, they have been exposed to the internet, to social networks, and to mobile systems. That context has produced a hypercognitive generation very comfortable with collecting and cross-referencing many sources of information and with integrating virtual and offline experiences. As global connectivity soars, generational shifts could come to play a more important role in setting behavior than socioeconomic differences do. Young people have become a potent influence on people of all ages and incomes, as well as on the way those people consume and relate to brands. In Brazil, Gen Z already makes up 20 percent of the country’s population. McKinsey recently collaborated with Box1824, a research agency specializing in consumer trends, to conduct a survey investigating the behaviors of this new generation and its influence on consumption patterns in Brazil.1 The survey coupled qualitative insights about Gen Z in three of the country’s major cities (Recife, Rio de Janeiro, and São Paulo) with multigenerational quantitative data that cut across socioeconomic classes. Our goal was to understand how this new generation’s views might affect the broader population, as well as consumption in general. Our study based on the survey reveals four core Gen Z behaviors, all anchored in one element: this generation’s search for truth. Gen Zers value individual expression and avoid labels. They mobilize themselves for a variety of causes. They believe profoundly in the efficacy of dialogue to solve conflicts and improve the world. Finally, they make decisions and relate to institutions in a highly analytical and pragmatic way. That is why, for us, Gen Z is “True Gen.” In contrast, the previous generation—the millennials, sometimes called the “me generation”—got its start in an era of economic prosperity and focuses on the self. Its members are more idealistic, more confrontational, and less willing to accept diverse points of view.

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The millennial generation is extensively influenced by technology. This generation has had access to mobile phones, digital equipments and the internet. The Millennials prefer text messaging, IMing, and social networking sites rather than conventional forms of communication such as phone conversations (Godwin-Jones 13). Consequently, technologically-inflected version of English has evolved. There has been fear that the technologically-inflected version of English is having effects on standard written English. Although the Millennial generation has learnt to code switch between the two versions of English depending on audience, it is unquestionable that technologically- inflected version of English is affecting standard written English.Use of technologically-inflected version of English has effect on standard written English despite of code switching between the two. Text messaging, blogging, IMing, social networking sites and other modern forms communication have become common and frequent (Godwin-Jones 17). The language used in the new forms of communication is likely to find its way to Standard Written English. For example, frequent use of abbreviations such as HR, HRD, HOD, and ALT in Standard English can be attributed to frequent use of technologically-inflected version of English.Code switching is a common practice in the multilingual world. Individuals have to switch from one language to another in order to communicate effectively. In most cases code switching is common in minority linguistic groups while in a dominant language (Auer 78). The practice is also common in bilingual or multilingual individuals. Individuals who code switch tend to choose the language to use automatically depending on their audience. Technology has led to unmistakable two versions of English. The millennial generation’s version of English does not adhere to standard words and rules in Standard English. Words such as ‘wassup’ ‘gd ngt’ ‘gr8’ ‘luv u’ have evolved because of need to write shorten words and phrases when text-messaging and IMing. The millennial generation has perfected in use of the technologically-inflected version of English considering that they have been brought up during the era of technology (Godwin-Jones 19). However, the Millennials have to communicate with other individual in the society. In school, they have to communicate with their educators, write academic essays and make presentations. In such situations, they have to use Standard English rather than the technologically-inflected version of English.

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In the end, the companies who will succeed in this new world are those who have reimagined activities that were typically done in the physical world as digital experiences. And for many consumers, these new digital experiences, from home workouts to order-ahead grocery pickups, have often proved more enjoyable and more convenient than those offline. For Gen Z, this is nothing new. They’ve never drawn a distinction between the physical and the digital world. For them, whether online or offline, the critical element is that you can seamlessly move between each. They’re leading this shift in consumer behavior with their digital fluency and articulating nothing less than a new paradigm for digital experiences.

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Auer, Peter. Code-Switching in Conversation: Language, Interaction and Identity. New York: Routledge, 2002.

Godwin-Jones, Robert. Emerging Technologies: Messaging, Gaming, Peer-to-Peer Sharing Language Learning Strategies & Tools for the Millennial Generation. Language, Learning & Technology 9.1 (2005): 17-22.

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What Is Gen Z's Definition and Approach to Leisure? Why? Do You Agree With the Presenter's Ideas?
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