Generation C

Generation C
: The very good Trendwatching newsletter (which keeps getting caught in my spam filter like a dolphin in the tuna net) continues the cultural meme of the culture creating its own content. The other day, I talked about consumers not just consuming anymore. Yesterday, Pew said that 44 percent of online users create content. Now Trendwatching gives it a name:

The GENERATION C phenomenon captures the tsunami of consumer generated ‘content’ that is building on the Web, adding tera-peta bytes of new text, images, audio and video on an ongoing basis.

The two main drivers fuelling this trend? (1) The creative urges each consumer undeniably possesses. We’re all artists, but until now we neither had the guts nor the means to go all out. (2) The manufacturers of content-creating tools, who relentlessly push us to unleash that creativity, using — of course — their ever cheaper, ever more powerful gadgets and gizmos. Instead of asking consumers to watch, to listen, to play, to passively consume, the race is on to get them to create, to produce, and to participate.

Examples: Not just weblogs but also phone-camera users napping up a storm; Canon selling professional-quality equipment to nonpros; HP et al selling the wonders of digital photography; make-your own music tools (they don’t even mention Garageband).

So maybe instead of consumers, we’re all creators. We create content. We create capital. We create demand.