What generation are you part of, really? Take this test.

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If you want to know how old you really are, look at the media you use rather than the generation you were born into.

Generational labels are important in the discussion of the changing workforce. For example, we need to understand who is pushing for change and who is criticizing change in order to understand how to create workplace bridges. And increasingly, young people are calling for baby boomers to get out of the way.

However I get a lot of email from people at the later end of the baby boom who do not identify with baby boomers. To some extent researchers have dealt with this issue by categorizing the latter section of the baby boom separately, as Generation Jones (born between 1954 and 1965). This category will make some people feel better, but there still will be baby boomers who are indignant at being lumped with the delusional, self-centered, money-hungry baby boomers.

But hold it. Maybe you are not really part of the generation your birthday falls under.

Here’s an idea: We should determine our generation not by our age but by how we use media. This comes from Margaret Weigel, who has worked at Harvard and MIT doing research on digital media engagement:* “We should not judge people rigidly by the years they were born,” she says, “If we want to define people by categories, it should be by behaviors because this is something each of us chooses.”

Another reason to use media engagement to peg someone’s age is that the media we use reflects both the space we live in and the circle of friends we run with. For example, you probably won’t find the Wii at a senior center, and you do what your friends do or you’re out of the loop.

So here is a test I put together with the help of an interview with Weigel and an evening reading her blog. Add up your points to figure out what generation you’re really a part of:

Do you have your own web page? (1 point)

Have you made a web page for someone else? (2 points)

Do you IM your friends? (1 point)

Do you text your friends? (2 points)

Do you watch videos on YouTube? (1 point)

Do you remix video files from the Internet? (2 points)

Have you paid for and downloaded music from the Internet? (1 point)

Do you know where to download free (illegal) music from the Internet? (2 points)

Do you blog for professional reasons? (1 point)

Do you blog as a way to keep an online diary? (2 points)

Have you visited MySpace at least five times? (1 point)

Do you communicate with friends on Facebook? (2 points)

Do you use email to communicate with your parents? (1 point)

Did you text to communicate with your parents? (2 points)

Do you take photos with your phone? (1 point)

Do you share your photos from your phone with your friends? (2 points)

0-1 point – Baby Boomer

2-6 points – Generation Jones

6- 12 points – Generation X

12 or over – Generation Y

(Note: This post contains the views of Weigel and not necessarily those of Harvard and MIT.)

382 replies
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      • fsilber
        fsilber says:

        I’m Generation Jones, but I love the ’90s music! It’s what my grandparents sang to me:

        “Bicyle Built for Two”
        “After the Waltz”
        “Sidewalks of New York”
        “Meet me in St. Louie”
        “The Band Played On”

        This was before all that noisy and immoral jazz took over popular music.

  1. Bill Dimmick
    Bill Dimmick says:

    I think it’s a bit disingenuous to boil down generational gaps to technology adaption – yes, you won’t find the Wii at a senior center, but that’s also related to the socio-economic status of seniors – most probably can’t afford it.

    Young people and the rich have disposable incomes and are easier adopters of gadgets – if Hugh Hefner scored a 12+ on this, I wouldn’t lump him in the GY category – I’d more likely think he’s an outlier or a mutant.

    • Stephen Booth
      Stephen Booth says:

      Depends on the senior centre! Here in the UK the last few years have seen the rise of ‘Silver Surfers’. Retired people in their 60s, 70s, 80s, 90s and even into their 100s who are seeing their children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren use all this technology and are taking lessons to keep up. Not only are they keeping up but many of them are getting hooked and overtaking their descendants. They’re certainly demanding WiFi in their seniors centres. One of my colleagues was setting up the WiFi in an elders care home and got chatting with one of the old guys there, explaining that this would allow them to surf the web from their laptops without needing wires. The old guy, who he says must have been 80 if he was a day, then asked him what security protocol he was using and if he (the 80 year old) would need a special client and if so was one available for Linux.

      Don’t forget, a lot of these people 60+ are the ones who built the foundations of what we’re using now.


      • Mike Manton
        Mike Manton says:

        Stephen, a nice post and quite amusing as well as being an eye-opener. I think a lot of people do not give the older generation the credit and credibility they deserve.

    • Er
      Er says:

      Haha, I love that you mentioned that you would not find a Wii at a senior center. I was just volunteering at one in Michigan, and helped out with the extremely popular, and very intense, game of Wii Bowling with the people living there. They love it!

    • Sean O'Malley
      Sean O'Malley says:

      Bill, visit any 1 of our 66 nursing homes (Long Term Care) facilities and you will find that we utilize the Wii in our therapy and Quality of Life programs. Although I can’t speak for the entire industry; we are revolutionizing it!

    • drunicusrex
      drunicusrex says:

      Hef is enormously popular with many in Gen X & is a bit of a Peter Pan himself.
      Plus most of his girlfriends are Gen Y. And I say (as a senior member of Gen X) Y not?

    • Phil
      Phil says:

      Hi Bill,
      That’s not true. I saw one used for hand therapy at a rehab center. There was an old lady bowling with a wii. :-)

  2. Dave
    Dave says:

    I think it is useful to stretch the concept of generations, but I think it is a huge leap to assume media and technology define us. Yes, there is a strong correlation–I scored 11 and, born in 1967, I feel more Gen-Xy than Boomery. But I’m kind of a geek, so although I’m almost a millennial by this score, I know I’m not in that group. I barely use my cell phone and the only pictures I take with it are screen savers for it because I think it is outrageous to pay as much as I do just for basic service…I just wish I had good reception for the calls I make; don’t need anything else. I don’t use IM anymore because I don’t know anyone I would want to IM. It was neat when it came out like a decade ago, but I got tired of it. Text messaging: again, who would I text? I don’t want people pinging me with instant messages; they can wait. OMG, maybe I’m a boomer! I’m so confused! :)

    I find it more useful to consider the values and outlook that define us…I grew up believing I could do anything I wanted and be anything I wanted. A lot of people, in any age group, have such rigid and structured ideas about everything, whereas I feel like I am the quiet rebel. I’m perpetually dissatisfied with everything and feel and urge and responsibility to change it–and frustration that I haven’t done more. I’m open to ideas and I’m always looking for tools to effect change–can we use a wiki to revitalize community? Can a blog form a sustained form of community? Are online micro communities a symbol of fragmentation of our society or can they be a revitalization when leveraged by the enabling media such as social networking sites? I think that kind of attitude–maybe not the specific technology details–is closer to a definition of Gen X than age or media alone.

  3. David at ReflectionsCoachingLLc.com
    David at ReflectionsCoachingLLc.com says:


    Ok.. I scored a 12, which make me an Xer, right on the verge of being a Yer.

    But I’m 46 years old (born in 1960). By historical definitions, I have fallen solidly in the Baby Boom Generation, although I noticed that Wikipedia has recently defined Gen X as anyone born from 1960 to 1978. To confuse matters more, it also defines Baby Boomers as anyone born between 1946 and 1964.

    And therein lies the rub. I could be a part of either group, but neither group correctly defines me.

    I’m told, as a boomer, that I should be looking toward the end of my career and retirement, but I feel more creative, productive, effective, and energetic than I have at any time in my life.

    I’ve been taught that I should be planning for retirement, but to me retirement is an obsolete concept. Health willing, I hope to have 25 more years to work. Even if retirement was available, I’d rather cash flow my life and find some career happiness and fulfillment through rewarding and satisfying work.

    Although I do share one distinct boomer trait: I did sacrifice happiness, work-life balance, and work-family balance, for a better life at some undetermined future date at an earlier time in my life, I’ve come to live a life in support of what you describe as the “New American Dream” of Xers and Yers: the dream of fulfillment. I’ve been able to make that shift and live that life.

    Many people are in the same boat I’m in, especially those that are thought of as being Boomers. They don’t identify with the stereotypes of that generation. They want fulfillment, too, but aren’t quite sure how to get it.

    They applaud the ideas, creativity, energy, and optimism of Xers and Yers, especially the effect they’re having on today’s corporate culture. At the same time, they know that they have much to offer, and that they want the happiness and fulfillment others are finding, and NOW.

    Thanks for giving them permission to do just that.

  4. Stephanie
    Stephanie says:

    Wow — born in 1971 and have always seen myself as part of Gen X… BUT — I scored 18 on this test (20 if you count texting parents when cell phone calls won’t go through) which puts me deep into Gen Y territory. Interesting.

  5. Lyndon Baugh
    Lyndon Baugh says:

    Agree behavior a better gage than calendar, but you didn’t fully do homework on some generalizations.

    I got 1,210,000 hits googling Wii Senior Center. One popular game is bowling, for people who have decades of memories, cooridination, but not strength or commuting time to get out to bricks & mortar bowling ally.

    Been distracted by repairs on elderly car, but should move from 10 to umpteen later this summer.

    51 now. My grandfather got his first computer at 94 and was well on his way through Generation Jones towards Generation X when he hit a hundred.

  6. Margaret
    Margaret says:

    Hi, this is the aforementioned Margaret, and yes, there are lots of seniors using Wii systems in senior centers; the NYT wrote about it not too long ago, and I think I blogged about it as well. I would hesitate to use the Wii as a measure at this point since it’s pretty new and widely adopted by a various of different types of players, for different reasons.

    Virtually everyone uses technology in some way, but what we use and when we adopt it says more about who we are than traditional definitions of Boomer- X -Y – Millenial. I’m a professional woman in my early forties — I enjoy YouTube and GoogleDocs (mmmmmm, GoogleDocs!), MySpace not so much. Then again, I have older friends who are on MySpace mostly because they are musicians and are publicizing their bands, and they’re using the site with less of the social drama and import younger users exhibit with it.

    My mother is 75 and she’s getting email for the first time this month. Does this vault her to the head of the class chronologically? Or is she just catching up? And what does that say about email when it’s becoming downright ubiquitous? And what does that say about who we are, how we choose to communicate and socialize and be entertained? Will the Emergency Broadcast System send out emails and text messages in the future, because really, who will be left watching broadcast TV? Should they blast a message to the WoW crowd in the game itself?

    Just some food for thought, y’all. Penelope rocks, and rocks hard.

  7. Rahul
    Rahul says:

    “For example, you probably won't find the Wii at a senior center,”

    Hey, I disagree. If ever there were a videogame system at a senior center, the Wii would be it.

  8. Danielle
    Danielle says:

    Out of curiousity, at what point do you think we’re going to start seeing a separation from the group of Millenials/Gen Y that are entering the workforce now or are currently in college and the younger group of this generation (which is sometimes listed at going all the way to 2002).

    This would also be interesting to examine in light of Weigel’s digital media use metrics. For example, several of my friends (myself included) have MySpace pages but generally use them only to keep in touch with people or post infrequently. My siblings, who are both in high school, use the site as their primary e-mail source. Makes me wonder what site, or simply how, my younger cousins who are 5 years old will communicate with each other.

    Interesting post. Thanks, Penelope!

    * * * * * * *
    This is an interesting question, Danielle. I think people are already starting to think of Gen Y as older and Millenniels as younger. Maybe my next quiz will be to figure out which one you are :)


  9. Pirate Jo
    Pirate Jo says:

    Well that explains a lot. I live in a smallish, midwestern city that has been losing its young people for decades. Things are largely run by the boomers around here – old-school insurance companies are common, start-up companies are not. So where are all the young people living? Got any stats on that? I’m ready to move.

    * * * * *

    When it comes to figuring out where the young people live, the two people who know the most are Richard Florida and Rebecca Ryan. You can check out all the stuff on their sites –  they both have consulting companies.


  10. Florinda
    Florinda says:

    “Do you use email to communicate with your parents? (1 point)”

    “Did you text to communicate with your parents? (2 points)”

    Those two don’t apply to me, because my dad (age 78) doesn’t have a computer. I do use them to communicate with my son, though – does that count?

    For the record – born in 1964, scored 6, which I guess makes me a textbook “Generation Jones”-er (a term I’d never heard until a month ago).

  11. Mike Berry
    Mike Berry says:

    Generation Jones???!! I don’t even get a trendy, end-of-the-alphabet initial to identify my “lost” generation? (Hold on. It was here just a minute ago…)Once again, screwed by the Boomers, Xers and Yists.

  12. Alice Bachini-Smith
    Alice Bachini-Smith says:

    This is a lot of fun! Of course there are other criteria as well as technology that distinguish one generation from another- Penelope talks about many of these in other posts. I’d love to see a quiz that went into lots more detail, including things like psychological awareness, emotional intelligence, get-up-and-go-ness as opposed to passive attitudes towards authority, etc.

  13. Rowan Manahan
    Rowan Manahan says:

    14 or 15. Gad! born in 1964, but behaving like a Gen Y whippersnapper!

    I’m not sure if I should be proud that I’m hip, cool and funky or worried that I should be getting fitted for a chest wig and super-huge medallions!

    So it’s true – “men come of age at 60, women at 15.”

  14. Tim
    Tim says:

    Can we get over this generation crap? It tells us nothing of meaning or value. It’s a simpleminded way of classification that reveals nothing important.

    I don’t care what generation you’re from. I want to know what you know. What have you learned? Are you willing to learn? What ideas do you have? Are you all talk? Do you give up when things don’t go your way? Are you someone who follows through? Can I count on you? Are you smart enought to realize you can learn from others who may not be as cool with technology as you are?

    Anyway, I find that most people, once they are taught about blogs, webs, texting, etc., learn to embrace it. And it’s not just about knowing how to use technology–it’s knowing how to use it effectively.

    And please, a younger generation telling an older genearation to get out of the way is nothing new at all.

    While some memebers of the so-called “Generation Y” might be technially with it, some seem to be even more self-involved than some of the so-called baby boomers ever were. That’s nothing to be proud of.

  15. Justin
    Justin says:

    Born in 1987, and scored at between 13 and 16.

    I was slightly confused by the fact that my website, my ‘professional’ blog, and my ‘online diary’ are all the same thing.

    Is this revealing, or simply white noise?

    * * * * * *

    I’m glad you bring up the lack of science involved here. I think the most important take away is not if the questions are perfect, but that we can think of our age and our generation in lots of different ways. And, in fact,  I think a lot of us (all of us?) instictively know the generation where we feel the best fit for ourselves — whatever anyone else says about us.


  16. Trevor Stafford
    Trevor Stafford says:

    “We should not judge people rigidly by the years they were born," she says, "If we want to define people by categories, it should be by behaviors because this is something each of us chooses."

    I think it was perhaps not a good idea to name your ‘behavioural’ categories after age groups :) Perhaps something from the [survey by the Pew Internet & American Life Project?]http://www.pewinternet.org/quiz/

    Their categories are:
    Lackluster Veterans
    Productivity Enhancers
    Mobile Centrics
    Connected by Hassled
    Inexperienced Experimenters
    Light but Satisfied
    Off the Network

    But of course the biggest problem with this is that people who don’t read blogs in the first place won’t be here to be counted. My late-boomer father would be among them…I write a startup technology magazine and he doesn’t have a clue what I do :)

  17. Rahul
    Rahul says:

    I just came across this article “Viewing American class divisions through MySpace and Facebook”, which could be relevant to the topic at hand. Notable extracts from the article: “Most teens who exclusively use Facebook are familiar with and have an opinion about MySpace. These teens are very aware of MySpace and they often have a negative opinion about it. They see it as gaudy, immature, and “so middle school.” They prefer the “clean” look of Facebook, noting that it is more mature and that MySpace is “so lame.” What hegemonic teens call gaudy can also be labeled as “glitzy” or “bling” or “fly” (or what my generation would call “phat”) by subaltern teens.”

    More: http://www.danah.org/papers/essays/ClassDivisions.html
    Via Bokardo (http://bokardo.com/archives/social-classes-on-networking-sites/)

    * * * * *

    Oh. Great find, Rahul. Danah Boyd is doing such interesting research. I have interviewed her on this blog before. She’s so on the bleeding-edge of the internal lives of young people. Thanks for giving us a link.


  18. Caitlin
    Caitlin says:

    I agree with Tim that the whole concept of generations is vastly over-rated. It exists – there’s no denying that growing up during the Depression (for example) changes your outlook on the world – but it’s overdone as a useful means to tell you about someone.

    Most sociologists would argue that other factors – gender and class and educational status and ethnicity and nationality – have a greater bearing on someone’s outlook and behaviour. The thing is that because they are genuinely important they are also far more sensitive. People are prone to make generalisations about generations because it’s safe, unlike making generalisations about race or class, which is a hot potato.

    I still did the test though. I scored 20, putting me firmly in Gen Y territory. Hmmm… I’m 31 and I guess by conventional standards I’m on the cusp of Gen X and Gen Y. I always identified as Gen X though, I guess because I came to age in the era of Nirvana and Reality Bites and also because I have been in the workforce for 10 years and I lived through the whole dotcom boom and crash.

    Now that I am 31, I have no problem with being in a younger generation but when I was 18 I wanted to be the older, cooler Gen X. Grouping myself in Gen Y (or the Nintendo Clan as I remembered it being called at the time) would have lumped me in with kids who were still in high school.

    I think siblings also have a bit to do with it, especially for people like me on the cusp of generations. I think if you have older siblings that had a big influence on you then that makes you more likely to fit in with the generation above you and vice versa.

    * * * * *

    Well, generations are not there to describe people, they are there to describe history. I think there’s value in understanding individuals and value in understanding groups and trends. And if you talk about the group you have to ditch the nuances of the individuals. I think it’s okay.. well, of course, I think it’s fascinating since I write about it all the time.

    Interesting point about siblings, though. I think you’re right that it has something to do with this. I have Gen Y brothers who, on this test, are Gen X. I bet that if they had younger siblings instead of older siblings they’d be scoring points on the test for things like remixing video — something their older siblings would never do.

  19. Bloggrrl
    Bloggrrl says:

    I ended up with thirteen points–Generation Y. I’m not about to say when I was born, because it might ruin my image if people knew I was really eighty-eight years old. Oops.

    My dad really got with it, and after retirement, is now making tons developing online coursework. Too bad he waited until retirement.

  20. Jillian
    Jillian says:

    Interesting thoughts, but don’t you think it’s a bit American-centric?

    Still, born in 1982, this confirms what I’ve always suspected – that with 10 points, I’m more an Xer than a Y.

    * * * * *

    The whole idea of dividing US history into generations is America-centric. No way around that.

    – P  

  21. Suze
    Suze says:

    Using this criteria, my 73 year old mother is a Generation Jones(er).

    I agree that class, education, ethnicity, et al. have a much bigger influence on who we are than what generation we fall into, but as Caitlin pointed out, those issues are far more sensitive and no one wants to talk about them.

  22. Rob
    Rob says:

    (If only I bought music on iTunes)

    I think you missed a big one here Penelope – Gaming. When put in front of a PC/Console – does it take less than 1 minute to pick up how the game plays? (Or a question along those lines)

    (oh – and I always find it interesting in reading any financial news source that talks about the “gaming industry”.. It gets my attention until I realize they are talking about the “gambling industry” – which has done a great job of re branding itself to something that sounds nicer..)

    * * * * *

    Great point, Rob.
    Margaret actually made a big point of this. She said such interesting things. For example causal games, like solitare, are not generally social. But “big games”, which are arranged between people who don’t know each other, via cell phone, are very social, because you have to talk with people when you meet them in person.

    I didn’t use games as a test question because while both genders in gen Y play games, older people who play games are mostly men.


  23. Rahul
    Rahul says:

    Penelope, there’s a variety of research that states that the “older” community of casual game players is a 50/50 split between genders, especially in the case of simple online games such as Bejeweled and comparables (your Solitaire example would fit the bill).

    So it depends on what you classify as “games”. I wouldn’t take Xbox 360 particularly seriously in trying to define what generation someone is from, but whether or not they play simple web games could be a pretty important metric, all things considered.

  24. Caitlin
    Caitlin says:

    I don't agree with Jillian (or Penelope!) that this is at all US-centric.

    Generations are defined usually by epochs in history – and these days these are largely global. WWI was a global war. The Great Depression was a global recession. WWII was a global war. The feminist and social revolution of the 1960s and 1970s happened all over the world (plenty of bra burning in the UK and Australia!). The internet is a global phenomenon.

    To take one example: Baby Boomers exist all over the world. World War II was not something that just happened in America (in fact you were late into the war). The war was fought in Europe and Asia and also involved millions of men from Commonwealth nations such as Australia and Canada and former British colonies such as India and Jamaica. The Baby Boom that resulted happened everywhere, from Singapore to Germany, not just the US.

    It's interesting to see how much traction the concept of Generation Jones (what an awful name!) has received already. It was invented by a media agency (which buys advertising) called Carat at some point last year. There's a lot of research behind it of course.

  25. s
    s says:

    Besides these questions I will put more weight on general attitude to conclude where do we belong. I read/write blogs, download in bittorrent endlessly and use all the so called web 2.0 sites, and I am closing 40. But the point is I see my colleagues in peer group so ignorant of all these and the fallout is – they don’t understand usability in any tool and introduce prehistoric tools everyday in business; they don’t understand the value of collaborative tools and urge to send everything by mail; they don’t understand a free culture can give excellent output and insist on dress code and strict timings. (maybe i am seriously offtopic:)

  26. Brent Green
    Brent Green says:

    Actually, technology adoption is not a primary factor in generational identity. In the sociological model of "age-period-cohort," technology opportunities and adoption reflect only the period dimension. Take music for example: Boomers have generally and easily adopted 45 RPM records, LPs, 8-track stereos, cassette players, CDs, MP3 players, and now XM Radio. Yet, we're still rocking to "I Can't Get No (Satisfaction)" through these playback devices. Generational identity is driven more by the cohort dimension, which includes adoption of values early in adulthood based on “collective mentalities” around historical events. (As a result of many feminist activities of the 60’s, Boomers widely adopted and then institutionalized gender equality as a keystone value, and this permeates the Luddites and the techies.) This is a complex topic for a quick post, but I have more insights about generational and sociological theory at http://boomers.typepad.com.

  27. Brent Green
    Brent Green says:

    To Caitlin’s comment about Generation Jones, Caret did not create this generational conceptualization. This is the creation of Jonathan Pontell, and Caret simply adopted the construct. Many of us in the area of generational marketing have recognized the difference between generational cohort and a demographic generation. The post-World War II baby boom is a demographic phenomenon. A cohort often occupies much less time, say five years either side of your birth year. If you’re a Joneser and interested, check out http://www.jonathanpontell.com. Also, to those who doubt the effectiveness of marketing to generations, I’m firm on the point that it works. Consider Ameriprise and its Leading-Edge Boomer-themed launch campaign. The brand began in October 2006 and opened at $24 per share. One year later (and after millions invested in targeting Boomers with cohort-themed messages), the share price was over $48. Today it’s over $60. Boomers voted in favor of this generational marketing approach with their investment dollars.

  28. Dave
    Dave says:

    Some interesting ideas in there, but they certainly don’t take into account many of the specific wrinkles of my situation, and I doubt that I’m the only one. I was born in 1957, which puts me firmly into Generation Jones, but I have always been an early adapter (first home computer bought in 1978). That experience as well as some lively privacy concerns/paranoia (the result of too many “spooky” jobs) has kept me away from most of the texting/IM areas. I’ve had a personal web page and built some for folks, but in the end determined that I didn’t want to share my interesting info with the world. What I was willing to share wasn’t worth the effort of updating/keeping current, so those efforts lapsed. Same thing with the phones – where I work, I usually can’t use my phone (or even have it with me), when I’m on the road, I can’t answer or use the phone (motorcyclist), and when I get home, I don’t want the electronic leash to bother me. Even thought I’ve had a cell phone for years, and even went for several years with only a cell, no landline, I always purchase the device with the fewest features and turn off messaging, web connectivity, down-loadable ring-tones, etc. I use the phone when I need it, and ignore it the rest of the time (or turn it off). Similar issues with music – I’d rather buy a CD and rip the music to my MP3 player/desktop/laptop than buy the music online and deal with all the DRM hassles. Same sort of issues with MySpace, FaceBook, and blogs. I have no need to reach a large audience, so I don’t see any benefit to putting myself out there on the blogosphere.

  29. Caitlin
    Caitlin says:

    Brent, I stand corrected. I didn’t mean to credit Carat with Jonathan Portell’s work. I am a UK-based media journalist and I was told about by Carat UK. I had the impression it was their work but this could easily be a misunderstanding.

  30. Brent Green
    Brent Green says:

    I didn’t mean to be too brazen, Caitlin. ;-} I just wanted to add some insights to the discussion. I know Jonathan Pontell personally, and you might want to contact him sometime to understand the evolution of Generation Jones. It’s an interesting story — one that has been embraced in the UK and Europe but is now just gaining traction in the US. I know from speaking to thousands during keynote addresses, incidentally, that Generation Jones is a self-identifying construct with strong gut appeal to many in a so-called “lost generation.”

  31. Linda Marsten
    Linda Marsten says:

    I scored 5 points on thia quiz, which fits the fact that I was born in 1960–I am a true GenJoneser. I’ve been seeing lots of media stuff about generation Jones, and am so glad for it–finally our long-ignored generation is getting some well-deserved attention! It’s funny, I was just talking with some old high school friends about GenJones a few days ago–we were laughing at ourselves about how into this whole Generation Jones movement we are, I think most of us Jonesers are just fed up with being left out of the national debate, so it feels good to finally have a collective identity (and “Generation Jones” is such a cool-sounding name!). Thanks for the quiz, I enjoyed it…

  32. Steve
    Steve says:

    I scored 1 point for downloading music. I guess that makes me a 33 year old Baby Boomer. Many of the items on the list are just high tech ways to waste time.

    * * * * *

    Well, here’s an interesting way to look at things. How you choose to waste time is a good way to define which generation you fit into. I mean, everyone wastes time in some way, right?

    PS Communicating with parents as a time waster? Moms and dads around the world are cringing!


  33. Steve
    Steve says:

    No Penelope, I either pick up the phone and call or drop by and visit. Either way, I don’t check in every hour like some Gen Y still attached to the cord.

  34. Rahul
    Rahul says:

    Awesome. “Some Gen Y”. Profileration! Recognition! Gimme more of these doggone insults!

  35. Julie
    Julie says:

    Interesting quiz. For giggles, I scored both myself and my husband, and it confirmed what I already knew: that despite being only five years older than me, my spouse acts and thinks about two generations older. He scored as a Baby Boomer, while I scored as Gen Y. I’m 35 and he’s 40.

    However, this gap is accounted for when you consider that he was the youngest of five children, the oldest of which is nearly old enough to be his mother. He was born Gen X, but -raised- in a Baby Boomer household. His parents are my grandparents’ ages.

    The upshot is that often he acts far, far older than he is. He carries old fashioned notions that grate on my nerves and strike me as ‘stodgy’, while my very young attitudes strike him as ‘irresponsible’. Somehow, we manage to meet in the middle, with him grounding me and me dragging him kicking and screaming into the 21st century.

    Fun quiz and article – thanks!

  36. John C
    John C says:

    I scored a 12… at the high end of my Generation (Gen X). I sometimes feel like I am part of both Gen X and Gen Y. Most likely because I was born right near the end of the Generation X years (1972).

    Love the quiz!

  37. JanieH
    JanieH says:

    The Generation Jones stuff is very interesting to me. I was born in 1965 and feel like I don’t belong to either the boomer of Gen X’s I work with.

    BUT I did score 16 on this quiz which makes me a 40-something Gen Y!

    • Technologydoesntcount
      Technologydoesntcount says:

      I’m just curious, why don’t you feel like a Gen-X when you’re the leading edge? For me the litmus test is not the technology per say, though that’s part of it; it’s more the cultural touch stones. Anyone young enough to have felt wide-eyed wonder from seeing Star Wars for the first time in a Gen-X. So are the kids who were in kindergarten or pre-school when Sesame Street made it’s debut.

  38. north dakota resident
    north dakota resident says:

    I found the test quite interesting but meaningless. As I type this, the only internet connection available is a dial up modem and there is no cell phone service. All the talk about the modern tools supposedly available, aren’t available to all. Second, at my federal work place with high speed internet, use of facebooks, downloading of video and downloading of audio is prohibited. I can do all the things listed in the list, but have no way to do it at home. BTW, I started programming computers in 1967 and kept up with the changes since then so I am not technologically illiterate.

    * * * * * * * *
    This is actually a good description of why the test works: A gen y worker would do everything they possibly could to get out of a work situation that had a dial-up modem. So that the dial-up modem makes you unable to get points on the test seems right to me. Your age is revealed in the fact that you are willing to stay in the office you’re in. It’s not a bad thing that you’re staying. It’s that a younger person wouldn’t want to because of the technology issues.


  39. north dakota resident
    north dakota resident says:

    I failed to indicate I was blogging from home on my dial up modem. Now retired, my former workplace, a federal agency has high speed internet, but as I did clearly state, accessing face books, downloading pictures, movies, or streaming audio or video or any of those questions mentioned in the test are both blocked and prohibited and could be grounds for firing. Many facilities in rural areas have only dial up access. Your comment of “It's that a younger person wouldn't want to because of the technology issues. ” logically follows that no self respecting GenY individual would want to work for the federal government, state agencies and many large businesses because of restrictions on internet access at work. I could have answered yes to all the questions since I have done all of them in other locations, but as I stated, without access to high speed internet and no hope of ever getting one in these rural areas, it is not likely I will ever get tp use it. This is why I thought the test was very short sighted. It is a perfectly valid test for those who have high speed access but completely invalid for those who live where such access is not available, which at the current time in the US accounts for almost 25% of the population from the last survey I read.

  40. Dan
    Dan says:

    Interesting. I was born in 1966 and scored a 4. That sorta would put me in the generation jones group. But I own 5 pc’s connected to the internet, a 360, ps3 and a wii.

    I make video games for my job and am very tech savey. My wife has a blackbury so why text her when I can send her email. I use a small digital camera the photo quality of phones is just crap. I don’t really download music but I have downloaded movies and play them on my TV through my 360 when I have a chance to watch TV. I have young twins and play a MMOG they togther take up my time so I don’t have time for myspace or a blog.

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