Old School Meets Social Media

Disclosure: I am participating in the Verizon Boomer Voices program and have been provided with a wireless device and six months of service in exchange for my honest opinions about the product. All opinions are my own and were not influenced, nor reviewed, by Verizon prior to posting. Ad for Verizon
Old School Meets Social Media

I read an article last month on MarketWatch that said 60% of people between the ages of 50-64 are using social media such as Facebook, and 43% of people 65 and over are using it! That’s huge.

Although, at 43, I don’t fall into either of those categories, social media is very important to me. Particularly now that I’m blogging.

But even before I was blogging, I was on FB and Myspace, in it’s heyday. As a military wife, social media is a great way to keep up with the lives of friends and family living in other parts of the country. I can view pictures documenting milestones in their childrens lives without littering my home with them.

I know most people, particularly young people, are surprised by the number of grandparents on social media, but I’m not. Look, we’re not talking about your average grandparents here, we’re talking about Baby Boomers. And Boomers are a breed unlike any other!

Rebels with a Cause

Boomers long ago established themselves as rebels who just weren’t going to play by the rules. They went against the grain and forged their own way, often making up the rules as they went along. And thank God they did!

Without them, the world in which we live and play would look very differently.

Equality and Civil Rights would likely be very different today, as would politics and business. Women were refusing to be left barefoot and pregnant in the kitchens of America and instead opted for higher education, often in male-dominated fields like medicine, business, and even politics. Women like Hillary Rodham Clinton and Anna Wintour have shattered the glass ceiling and continue to push ever higher.

Baby Boomers redefined and revolutionized music. Without them, Rock ‘N Roll wouldn’t exist. And, sorry Gen X and Y, but without Rock ‘N Roll, Rap and Hip Hop wouldn’t exist either.

Of course Elvis, The Beetles, and The Rolling Stones immediately come mind when we think about early Rock ‘N Roll. And with good reason. But, can you imagine a world without Janis Joplin, The Doors, Bob Dylan, Elton John, James Taylor, Carly Simon or Annie Lennox? Boomers changed the face of music in ways that are unimaginable!

Baby Boomers took us to space and to the movies. E.T, Jaws, Schindler’s List, The Color Purple, Indiana Jones, Amistad, and Poltergeist were all directed by one of Hollywood’s greatest Baby Boomers; Steven Speilberg. Quentin Tarantino, Oliver Stone, Rob Reiner, James Cameron, and Ron Howard are also Baby Boomers.

Try to imagine movies without actors and actresses like Meryl Streep, Harrison Ford, Helen Mirrin, Liam Neeson, Julianne Moore, Steve Buscemi, Susan Sarandon, and even Keven Costner. Baby Boomers, all of them.

And although the younger generation believes they have the market on computers and cell phones, without Baby Boomers like Steve Jobs and Bill Gates, they likely wouldn’t exist at all.

Boomers on the Internet

With a quick Google search, you can find any number of Boomer bloggers discussing any topic imaginable. Not only do they discuss politics, money, healthcare, and retirement, but also topics such as green living, fashion, technology, travel, and sex. Their voices and opinions are sought after and respected.

And that’s no more evident than with Verizon’s Midwest Boomer blogger program. Verizon has gathered about 15 Boomer bloggers to test out and report about their products and services. They want to know how technology, mobile devices, and social media fit into our everyday lives.

Though I’m not technically a Boomer, (my husband is) I was lucky enough to be included in this panel. After spending two days with these women, I understood why Verizon, and other companies like them, would be interested in their opinions. They are smart, savvy, and outspoken women and consumers who know exactly what they want and need. They know what it takes to stay at the top of their game, and they won’t settle for less.

And, perhaps most importantly, large companies know that we are at that point in our lives where we can better afford those things. Most of us are well past the age of raising families, accumulating needless possessions and struggling to pay mortgages. We have saved for our retirement, though not many of us are ready to retire, and we are more interested in quality over quantity. We want and expect value for our money.

No, No, We Won’t Go

In typical Boomer fashion, they are not going gently into the night. In the 60’s, many Boomers demanded to be heard and respected. Today, they command both. They have, and continue to, put in their time and they have carved out their place in history. They have not been called the Greatest Generation for nothing.

So, the next time you hear some kid cry foul that Granny has sent them a tweet or friends request, remind them that without Granny and her fellow cronies, not only would Twitter and Facebook likely not exist, neither would they!

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