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Where do we draw the line: ‘90s babies or millennials?

Colleen Roach, Staff Writer

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I’ve always wondered how society chooses to classify generations. What makes a ‘90s baby a ‘90s baby, and more importantly, which  generation are we?

I’ve noticed that people born during the years of 1996 to 1998 can’t decipher whether they’re ‘90s babies or millennials. We were born too close to the end of the ‘90s to be able to fully remember it, but not in the 2000s to be considered millennials. However, we also have characteristics of both.

We grew up playing outside with other kids in our neighborhoods or friends from school. Technology was basically nonexistent until your class went to the computer lab at school. Phones had cords and no long-distance calls could be made unless it was to your relatives. Cell phones were made by Nokia and were indestructible.

Then came our adolescence, and there was a significant shift. I place it around the time I was in 6th grade. Technology became more integrated into our everyday life. MySpace was replaced by Facebook, followed by Instagram and Twitter; teenagers and children were getting phones at younger ages than before, and any kind of relationship started to have an online beginning.

Before, when someone wanted to meet new people, they just went to a bar or asked a friend to set them up. Now, we go online when we want to meet someone new. When we want to date someone, our friends show us Tinder, Match.com or one of the other multitudinous websites and apps for dating, and we start swiping right and left.

I can still remember receiving lectures from adults in my life about how dangerous talking to strangers online can be. Now those warnings have fallen by the wayside, and we embrace going online to make new friends or getting into a new relationship.

I can’t possibly be the only person who is confused as to whether we should be considered ‘90s babies or a millennials. Personally, I choose the ‘90s baby because the childhood I described above was mine. However, I know of people who have had a childhood similar to mine without large amounts of technology and describe themselves as millennials. Which do you think our generation is, or does it depend on an individual’s childhood?

A student news site of Columbia College
Where do we draw the line: ‘90s babies or millennials?