Gen Z is not about disrupting or canceling, but about authenticity - WebSummit 2022

Back to news overview Screenshot 2022 11 02 at 17 42 57

We - Kirsten & Wilmar - are live at the WebSummit covering its highlights for you (and ourselves of course). Politico has said WebSummit is “the world’s premier tech conference”, the Atlantic: Web Summit is “where the future goes to be born” and the Guardian calls it the Glastonbury for Geeks. This is our fifth time here.

Some major takeouts on Gen Z, a generation crucial for the future of all of us and the world:

Gen Z is not about cancelling, it’s about authenticity

Better informed
Ann Curry (AP): "
Gen Z is probably better informed than any other generation and definitely smart enough to make their minds up for themselves. Our simple (?!) task is to provide them with information and content in the best possible way."

Media of their choice
Gen Z doesn’t trust the older generation nor mainstream media, because it is the media of choice of that older generation. Gen Z finds its own platform - whether it is Twitch, BeReal, TikTok or Only Fans - and we need to be there and share news in a way they want. However not in a naive way: “We do have to keep in mind TikTok has influence from the Chinese Communist Party and we don’t know if it can and will be weaponised in the future.

Don't snooze, dive in
So many people are afraid to get things wrong when it comes to Gen Z, they don’t do anything at all.

Gen Z is going to be the dominant work force and consumer base, so you need our generation to future proof your company. Harris Reed's advice is to dive in, ask questions: "Don’t be afraid, we are not about canceling but listening. Gen Z is also not about disrupting either. It’s all about being authentic. Our generation will act and stand up if we feel you’re not authentic. We're the generation of sensibility.

Fashion leads the way
Reed: "If you want to get inspired, fashion is a frontrunner when it comes to embracing Gen Z and the topics they care about (like D&I). It would be good if the corporate world and big brands would also go that way. It’s not about activism, it's about action. We want the world to be safer and better."

Inspired by talks including Ann Curry (acclaimed journalist Associated Press), Harris Reed (ZEO Edelman) Judith Nwandu (Political Reporter The Shade Room), Subrata De (Global Head of News Vice)

Screenshot 2022 11 02 at 17 42 57
Date 02 November 2022
Published by Wilmar Alex Tax & Kirsten Scholte

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