Between a Gen Z and a Millennial


Photographs courtesy of Giang Nguyen

I was born in 1998. I’m technically considered a 90s kid, but I don’t even remember the 90s. I remember dialup internet, third edition Dungeons & Dragons, the original Yu-Gi-Oh playing on 4Kids, and a time before smartphones were even a thing. To Millennials I’m considered Gen Z; to Gen Z kids I’m considered a Millennial. Although the categories do not matter, it can become rather strange when you cannot quite categorize yourself as a Millennial nor Gen Z. 

In reality, it almost seems as if there should be an in-between of Millennial and Gen Z. One can argue that the creation of smartphones was a cultural movement in itself that brought on a different upbringing, with children having had a smartphone as their first phone. It created a new way for people to check the internet and carry around what was virtually a miniature laptop. Regardless, I can still remember the days when people had smartphones but were unable to even look at the internet because of their data plans. Of course, now there are unlimited plans or Wi-Fi available everywhere, which allows children to access internet virtually anywhere, with information available anytime they want it. 

Of course I was around when the internet was around. I can still remember the dialup noises and the ringing and having to be off the house phone in order to get access to the internet. All that’s needed now is a simple password, and you’re online. Technology has become so advanced that I can remember when certain technology was not available because it wasn’t as advanced as it is now.  

Since technology is moving so fast now it’s hard to categorize things simply as Gen Z or Millennial. It also does not help that the end and beginning of each generation overlaps and changes based on what website or person you ask. It seems as if no one has an idea of what each generation is supposed to be. Perhaps calling someone post-smartphone or pre-smartphone is a better statement rather than simply pointing at another and calling them a Gen Z.