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The Crash of Ages: Newsflash - Millennials Had It Tougher, GenZs!

The Millennials ran so GenZs could walk.

The Crash of Ages: Newsflash - Millennials Had it Tougher, GenZs!

In this era of digital dominance, GenZs are definitely owning it. But before them, it was the Millennials who did it first. They were navigating the internet and social media when it was all fresh and new. GenX made the lock to the digital city, Millennials held the key to uncharted waters and GenZs simply came in comfortably with their own flair.

The last blog post showed off GenZ’s dominance with their own quirky list of slangs (like Bangers!) and social media trends too. This time, we’re taking a detour and shining the spotlight on the Millennials!

From AICREATIVV’s temporary token GenZ-er, welcome to part two, besties.

Clash of Ages or Generational Harmony?

Telephones & Technology

It was during a team bonding session when everyone was playing a round of Jackbox (#teamwork). We use our phones to enter an online room and tap our answers into them (#technology). One of the rounds was to dial a specific phone number given on the TV screen.

The catch? You had to dial on a rotary phone. Not the smartphone we all know now.

For anyone who doesn’t know what a rotary phone is, this is what it is:

rotary phone, old inventions, old style phone
The contraption that bamboozled our resident GenZ, a rotary phone.

Everyone in the team dialed the phone number with no problem as the timer was counting down. With only 10 seconds left while everyone else was chilling you’d hear Batrisyia screeching, unable to get the numbers rolling the way it was meant to roll (she didn’t know you were supposed to wait for the number to roll back to 0 before continuing 😐). The rest of the team started laughing at her when they realised why Batrisyia was making noises.

Why? Batrisyia is a 2001 baby who has never used or even touched a rotary phone in her life. Iman, a 2000 baby, who sat next to her asked with the sassiest tone you could imagine, “Pause - girl, do you not know how to use one?”. Iman got it down because her grandmother owned a working rotary phone back home; a woman of technological culture.

Farhan calls this moment, “the funniest GenZ-Millennial moment” he’s seen happen in front of his two eyes.

Millennials 1 - GenZs 0.5 (Thanks to Iman and her grandmother)

Onomatopoeias are Quirky

If you’ve read the last Millennial-GenZ post, you would know some GenZ slangs the team of AICREATIVV uses on the daily. There’s another word gaining popularity. It isn’t a slang GenZs use but it is an onomatopoeia!

The only GenZ onomatopoeia slang this author could think of is Skrr. You would hear it in a lot of hip-hop/trap songs. It was widely used during the Vine era (which a lot of younger Millennials and older GenZs were users of). It was used in the context of wanting to skip an event or to do something. Nowadays, you wouldn’t hear it being used in that context though, instead, you would see it on a lot of TikTok dances. Try guessing what gesture TikTokers would use whenever a ‘Skrr’ was used in a TikTok dance.

Driving a car. Steering the wheel. Skrrr. 🚘

What’s the one word the team’s Millennials have been saying? Think Millennial Bruneian for this though.

Widely used by the team’s Millennials:


Used as a sound effect whenever retelling a story of how you’ve made a mistake or misunderstood something, ‘Toink!’

Batrisyia and Iman have heard her aunt say it, her older cousins, and if you’re Bruneian or call Brunei home, you had to have heard it at least once too. Bruneian Reddit user CardResident2308 has to be a millennial or maybe someone that resonates with the Millennials because:

An instance of 'toink' being used conversationally in a Reddit thread.
An instance of 'toink' being used conversationally in a Reddit thread. #LifeIsWonderful

However, Skrr isn’t the right slang to use when comparing it with Toink in terms of conversational context. Instead, a GenZ would probably say, Oop- but it's used whenever someone does/says something that shouldn't have been done/said.

Amal: I think I left a scratch on your van, Farhan… Iman: Oop 👀-

Millennials 2 - GenZs 2.5 (the author is GenZ biased and believes Skrr and Oop outdoes Toink)

Hairspiration: What’s In & What’s Out?

One afternoon during lunch, the creative team was talking about hairstyles and Amal piped a, “Hey, remember that hairstyle everyone did back then?” taking quick glances at Najang.

Funny enough, Batrisyia and Iman knew exactly what Amal was talking about. The two grew up seeing their older cousins and friends pull it throughout their childhood and early teen years – The side swept, sleek shiny hair.

Zendaya was in on it! Willow Smith (a GenZ, btw)! Margot Robbie!

Zendaya, Willow Smith, and Margot Robbie rocking the millennial side part.
The AICREATIVV team members, Najihah, Iman, Amal, and Batrisyia reliving the past with the millennial side part.
Najang, Amal, Iman and Batrisyia throwing it back. (Asyraf said "poklenz". Rude.)

Just as a wolf cut was hyped amongst GenZ, this side sweep was a trend amongst the Millennials. One thing Millennials have that GenZs don’t is the length of a trend staying in. There would be something trendy floating around and it would stay trendy with double the length of time compared to trends within GenZs. The most logical reason for this is, since social media is easily accessible (with a faster internet speed too), it makes hype and information explode and trailblaze everywhere. This explains the fast rise and drop of trends because not long after the wolf cut, there was the pixie cut, and highlights came back in trend too; trend after trend after trend.

Fun fact! When searching up the hashtag “#hairstyle360” on TikTok, you can play a game of take-a-non-alcoholic-shot for every new hairstyle you come across while scrolling.

Do you notice how GenZs have an obsession with bringing back trends they were once surrounded by as a child? Or how GenZs jump on one trend and then quickly drop it just to jump to another? It’s giving; attachment issues. It’s giving; short attention span. (Disclaimer: the author of this post is a GenZ herself and falls into the above majority category of GenZs.)

Because GenZs have attachment issues and short attention spans:

Millennials 4 - GenZs 2.5

But hey, with all the fast-paced changes with trends and hype, doesn’t that mean GenZs are just innovative and flexible? Hehe:

Millennials 4 - GenZs 3.5

Dark Times Before TikTok Existed…

Before apps such as Instagram, Twitter, and TikTok became the norm, there were others that once existed… Crazy… Batrisyia asked the team’s millennials what they used when they first had access to the internet.

They were telling her about all these platforms, listing them down one by one. The only platform that Batrisyia and Iman knew of was Facebook since they used to have an account themselves! The two lied on the age verification page to play fun online Facebook games.

The platforms they had never heard of were MySpace, eBuddy, and Friendster.

Like! Pause! Apparently, MSN used to be a messaging website/app? Big shock. Like what do you mean people actually used MSN to message each other and not in a Microsoft-email-school-work way?

The team’s Millennials showed the GenZs screenshots of some of these apps (’cause most of them are unalive now, RIP) and how they would use them. On Friendster, they would update their profile by posting the song they were listening to, but instead of having it linked to Spotify or Apple Music, it would be an individually downloaded MP3. They would edit the song title, inserting how they were feeling at the moment of posting it:

Friendster, 2000s social media, blogging
A classic account on Friendster.

To the author, this was a “Wow, you had it tough, huh?” moment.

Older GenZs experienced having to download songs one by one too! Just not as long as the Millennials had to do it. Today, you can easily link songs online, be it an Instagram story, a Snapstreak, or a BeReal post! We won’t be able to overshare our emotions online through editing the titles, though. Oop. Most GenZs, and younger Millennials too, would have a Finsta account (a second Instagram account where people would spam their day-to-day).

Fun fact! According to a quick Google search, Millennials' top 3 platforms are Facebook, Instagram, and Youtube (Gitnux, 2022) whereas GenZs’ top 3 are Youtube, Instagram, and TikTok (Morning Consult, 2023). Inch resting.

For surviving the earlier years of the internet and being dedicated to downloading songs individually:

Millennials 5 - GenZs 4.5

But! For the older GenZs who took one for the team and experienced the era of downloading songs individually too:

Millennials 5 - GenZs 5

From Hashtags to Action

Social media plays a huge role in people’s everyday lives, ranging from entertainment, businesses, education, and networking. These online materials are a mix of positives and negatives like how there are good apples and bad ones too.

Let’s be serious but also keep it light for a second. Millennials and GenZs use social media as a powerful tool: from tapping on their phones, Zillennials are raising awareness and making changes in society - from hashtags to actions! (#powerful) These advocacies include mental health. It’s been openly talked about nowadays and these two generations are to thank for this.

During one lunch break, Amal mentioned her fascination with how different Millennials and GenZs approach their goals and daily tasks. Being a Millennial herself, she emphasised how she strives to complete her tasks efficiently and swiftly. She mentioned how she was surrounded by her elders having a similar mindset too. GenZs, on the other hand, would complete their task but take their time in doing so.

Amal then asked Batrisyia and Aaqillul their perspectives on reaching personal goals. Though not all GenZs would agree with this, both agreed how in a perfect world with no outside pressure, they value reaching their goals at their own pace. They are in no rush to reach the finish line and instead appreciate the process of reaching their goals.

The biggest reason for this is because they prioritize their mental health. Millennials started the car’s engine by advocating it online and the majority of GenZs who consumed it started driving. The majority of GenZs value their mental health and believe that the world should be much kinder to each other.

There may be a clash of ages when it comes to online content consumption such as Youtubers, memes, and trends but these two generations show their harmony when making impactful and positive changes!

For this reason, the scoreboard round-up is a 10:

Millennials’ 5 + GenZ’s 5 creating a 10 (#quickmath) <3

To wrap it up, think of a generational relay! Millennials braved their own wild adventures, setting the stage for GenZs to embark on their own journey. The two generations face their own challenges, just in different forms, maybe the Millennials in italics and GenZs in bold:

When the going (Millennials) get tough, the tough (GenZs) get going!


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