Hello everyone! COVID-19 is the cause of us losing out on our normal schedules including missing important dates like our spring break trips, graduation, and day to day in-person classes and activities. That is why this week I wanted to share with you this article from the NY Times, “We Live in Zoom Now“, about how Gen Z is using Zoom for everything. Below is part of the article that I think is important to share and is relevant to how most of us are feeling!
“Teenagers have jokingly referred to themselves as “Zoomers” online for years; now the name is literal. Overnight, Zoom has become a primary social platform for millions of people, a lot of them high school and college students, as those institutions move to online learning. College students across the country are going on Zoom blind dates. Parents of sixth-graders at Rosenbaum Yeshiva Of North Jersey organized a Zoom “recess” for their children. Ethel’s Club, a wellness platform, is conducting Zoom tarot card readings, breath work and cannabis hangouts.
‘We finally figured out what the Z stands for in Gen Z’
Virtual gatherings are proliferating. Harvard University, like many schools, has canceled all in-person graduate and undergraduate classes and will conduct them via Zoom. A common joke among college students is that they all go to “Zoom University” now — the same school, just with very different price tags. Zoom University merch is already for sale on Amazon and RedBubble.
“We finally figured out what Z stands for in Gen Z,” a college student in the Zoom meme group joked. Many students say that adjusting to school closings and public health guidelines to isolate has been incredibly hard. They have used Zoom to attempt to replicate some sense of normalcy. Parties, sorority socials and beer pong nights have found a new home on Zoom. Some students developed Zoom-themed drinking games for Zoom parties, adjusting the popular game “never have I ever” to “never have I ever left quarantine.” “If someone can figure out how to invent a party atmosphere in this socially distant format, then I think it will be a mainstay,” said Lucas Moiseyev, a senior at Carnegie Mellon. “Twitch is to YouTube as Zoom can be to TikTok.” Mr. Moiseyev thinks the platform has potential to become part of Gen Z’s daily life, post-coronavirus, if the platform can incorporate more social features.
Students say they want things like better direct messaging, more funny face filters and the kind of stickers, live video effects and editing tools they get on platforms like TikTok and Snapchat. For the time being, young people are being creative with what they have. Teenagers have created TikToks of Zoom hacks, like how to make it appear as if you’re in class when you’re not. Uploading custom backgrounds has become a way for multiple users to screen share funny memes or videos. At a Zoom party on Saturday, one college student figured out how to adapt a meme and loop a video of Ricardo Milos, a male stripper, behind him.
As new Zoom users flock to the platform, social norms are still evolving. Michael Crisp, a student at Kansas State University, tweeted: “i’m unfamiliar with zoom etiquette. do we gotta ask to leave to go to the bathroom or what. can i have food? can my cat ride shotgun? do i absolutely need pants? this is my HOME bro.” Any Zoom event with too many callers can also become chaotic. — Some people leave their microphones on, chat nonstop in the sidebar, flip their backgrounds around. “
How is the transition to online going on with you? Stay safe and healthy everyone, we will get through this!