AN HOUR WITH A COLLEGE NEWSPAPER
I'd rather discover my own consumer report than download one online.
Whenever I'm stuck on a project, I try to eavesdrop on people or watch Louis C.K. It's easier to get a grasp on how people feel about things when they aren't aware anyone is listening, and I've always found humor to shed light on how we actually behave in the world versus how we think we behave.
A satirical newspaper accomplishes both of those things. It's a self-aware conversation. Here are just a few ideas and observations that came from one that I found on my old college campus this winter.
TODAY'S COLLEGE KIDS
WHAT DO THEY BELIEVE IN?
Technology is only worthwhile if it's useful.
They idolize Elon Musk and bash 3D printers. One of them is changing the world, and the other seems like a gimmicky toy.
Perfect relationships shouldn't be perfect.
In their Valentine's Day posts, great relationships always involve fighting and making up.
Everyone should be a feminist.
Male feminists get some attention on the Valentine's Day page -- Emma Watson's speech must have made a difference for them.
WHAT DO THEY WORRY ABOUT?
There's a dystopian version of "The Little Engine That Could" that shows the engine losing his wealth and fame, then collapsing into depression and alcoholism. There are other references to student debt and the volatile economic climate, suggesting that just because they've earned something doesn't mean they believe they'll keep it.
Holden Caulfield has found his generation. They call out all of the phonies, from the basic bitches carrying lattes and the same one-shouldered sorority bags, to the Kickstarter lemmings who ask people to fund unoriginal ideas.
Becoming a passable adult.
On one hand, they live on their own, feed their own stomachs, and manage their own schedules. On the other hand, they can't manage to stock toilet paper, shower regularly, or hold onto the same iPhone for longer than a month.
WHAT BRANDS DO THEY LOVE? HATE?
17 brands were mentioned in the newspaper.
Positive brand perceptions:
Moe’s Southwest Grill
Hatcher’s Chocolate Milk
Smirnoff Flavored Vodka
Negative brand perceptions:
WHAT MEDIA DO THEY CONSUME?
Yik Yak (over Twitter)
Instagram (over Facebook)