Vanessa Khan works for Bonhill Group plc, the company behind Information Age. She also happens to be ever so slightly younger than Google, which celebrates its 20th birthday today. So we asked this millennial, how does she perceive the world through the lens of Google, and how does she think digital technology has affected her?
No more trips to the library
Vanessa is not so young that she can’t remember taking a book from the library, but says that growing up as a millennial, the methods of gaining knowledge quickly switched from going to the library and borrowing a book to downloading the Google app on any smart device available. “The majority of the things I know today can be put down to research I conducted through one primary source – Google.”
What about social media? How often does Vanessa use Facebook?
Use what she said, jokingly. Vanessa is a Snapchat user. But even she, gets befuddled with the features, “which I struggle to understand a lot of the time. My first resort to understanding is always Google. It’s fast, easy to access and helpful.”
Are you a YouTuber?
Maybe this is the first obvious example of how the young millennial, not far off being a member of generation Z differs from those of us who are older. “YouTube (which was bought by Google in 2006: “Is not only useful for entertainment but for career purposes too, with many of those in my generation finding their big break coming from creating a Youtube channel.” She gives as examples of popular YouTubers Nella Rose, Backchat London and Rapman’s Shiro’s Story, who she says “have all sparked attention from a majority of young people across the country and even some across the world,” but maybe not much interest among the baby boomer generation.
What about privacy?
“Privacy is ignored by my generation compared to earlier generations. However, this can be put down to how easy it actually is to ignore privacy policies by just clicking ‘accept’ on your smart devices.”
Without Google, I don’t think my everyday routine would be the same.”
Well, Google is important to people across the age spectrum, but maybe those who are older than the company, born in the 1990s, 1980s, 1970s, 1960s 1950s or before, it is not quite the life changer. Those of us who belong to these older age groups, can a least remember what life was like before BG — before Google.
Jeh Kumar is a veteran of creating and managing digital content to build relationships for organizations and individuals.