Club Penguin and Snapchat Vibes
“literally made me feel worse than Instagram"
Juul has to pay Washington State a cool $22.5 million over youth vaping; New York Public Library just made banned books free on its app; and — how’s this for a headline! — Kristen Stewart to “star in A24 bodybuilding romantic thriller.”
WHAT DOES GEN Z SEE IN JOHNNY DEPP?, gawker
A multi-million dollar defamation suit between Johnny Depp and Amber Heard is currently happening in Virginia, and a “variety of Gen Z internet users have taken an active, if not aggressive, interest in the case, joining hands across the world to support Depp, who they see as a pious, gentle victim, against Heard, who they see as a vindictive, lying manipulator.”
BEREAL MADE ME REALIZE ALL MY FRIENDS ARE HANGING OUT WITHOUT ME, buzzfeed
Hands down the best piece I’ve read about BeReal. Although the media has portrayed it as Gen Z’s new favorite app, one young person described it to reporter Kelsey Weekman as “2016 Snapchat streak vibes,” while another said it “literally made me feel worse than Instagram.”
YOUNG AND DEPRESSED? TRY WOEBOT! THE RISE OF MENTAL HEALTH CHATBOTS IN THE US, guardian
We know that chat therapy is far from ideal, but this story centers around a 15-year-old who has “struggled to cope with the changes and anxieties of pandemic life” yet “didn’t feel comfortable going to a therapist.” I tend to think of Gen Z as being unilaterally cool with therapy — of course they all aren’t, because they’re extremely individualistic — but I still appreciate this perspective. That said, Woebot is a terrible name.
CONSUMERS ARE READY TO SPEND FOR SUMMER FUN, wwd
This survey was commissioned by a BNPL-er so we’re going to ignore all of the “data” about how Gen Z loves BNPL, and focus instead on this:
Younger generations that are determined to get out for travel said they would be willing to get a little creative to afford a trip. For two in five Millennials and Gen Z respondents, this includes being willing to pick up side gigs — like working for Uber or Doordash — in vacation destinations to offset costs, while another 30 percent of Millennials and 24 percent of Gen Z said they are ready to take on providing labor to worksites like farms and ranches.
THE DAY THE PUFFLES CRIED: DISNEY SHUTS DOWN CLUB PENGUIN REWRITTEN, vulture
Club Penguin, a massive multiplayer online game that ran from 2005 to 2017, was the first-ever social-media platform for many Gen Zers. When the official site shut down, a number of private servers emulating and building upon the game cropped up to take its place, developed and maintained by independent programmers and moderators.
One — actually, no, two — more thoughts: