REWIND: Social Issues- Trends that Define the 2000s
Trends that Define the 2000s
Only a decade ago the blackberry was just a fruit. Green was a colour with no political meaning. Reality TV was just crappy TV thrown in between bad videos on MTV.
The 2000s were quite the decade. The twin towers and September 11 2001 started off the drama of American politics and global upheaval in the middle-east. Was it all about oil? or was it also about more... The 2000s were defeintiely about what is discussed below.
This article focuses on the lifestyle changes that impacted us all in the 2000s. It was like watching a precocious teenager get spoiled, want gadgets, and throwing some temper tantrums along the way. It was a decade of fast moving technological change characterized by gadgets, mobile devices, twittering, and video on demand.
Do you remember hearing the phrase "there's an app for that!". I did. Many times. Apparently there was an app for almost anything. I even found an app that turned my iPhone into a toaster with the ability to set the toast factor and whether I toasted an english muffin, bread, or a bagel. There was also the iBeer. This app was so cool. It used the accelerometer to simulate pouring a beer from your iPhone. I seriously got excited about these truly useless apps.
The decade saw electronics being squeezed into everything from GPS systems, to digital crying babys, and robotic toys. Apps were everywhere and Apple and RIM didn't let us forget about it.
I blog, you blog, he blogs.... How did we spend our time before blogging? There are more than 100 million of these web logs out there in the digital universe and growing.
The next big leap in blogging in mobile blogging and Facebook mobile. You can now blog anywhere and at any time so your life is as immediate as CNN headline news. Having a stylist to follow you around is another consideration so you always have perfect hair for your Facbeook pics.
The Blackberry gained the reputations as being "essential" for corporate CEOs and moms planning playdates. The yuppy world ate up the Blackberry. It was not only an antioxidant laden fruit but also a radio transmitting brain cancer causing data device. The device was introduced in 2002, wow that seems like years ago. The smartphone version is now used by more than 28 million people, according to RIM, the maker (based in Waterloo Ontario Canada).
The phrase "crackberry" was invented to describe the addictive, obsessive, emailing 24/7 behaviour of their users. The device has an ability to make you feel like working wherever you are. Immediacy was the phrase that came to mind. Insanity is the other.
This word embodies the expectation that we are supposed to always be connected wirelessly, at any time and in any place we go. Even the washroom. If your boss emails you on the weekend, you better respond, unless you plan to take a trip to an underground mine or to an arctic glacier. Well the arctic might have wireless soon if the icecaps keep melting.
The Crock and the Crock-knockoff were scary looking plastic shoes that gave off this weird plastic odor if your feet got really warm. The strange thing about Crocks is that they were comfortable. I didn't quite understand why they were so comfortable. The slight problem was-- they were really ugly.
Crocks made me feel as if I was in a hospital 24/7. They seemed like the type of shoes you would put on a patient before they went into surgery. Crocks became the shoes we loved to hate. Just like the death of disco, there were groups online dedicated to the complete obliteration of crocks from the planet. I don't think they are bio degradable so we may need to recycle them into asphalt biproducts. Entrepreneurs take note.
If you read Facebook's user agreement you are basically signing your entire privacy and life away to the US and International governments when you post anything on Facebook. The good thing is, my life is so mundane I can't see what they would find interesting about it. The Canadian government's privacy advocates cracked down hard and forced Facebook to make important privacy changes and set a time limit. I am proud to be Canadian because we care about privacy. You should too:-)
This social networking site was once limited to Harvard Students? I found that fact amusing when researching this article. Wow it makes Facebook sound so classy. Now Facebook is full of teenagers posting pictures of them everywhere and anywhere.
300 million people worldwide vacuum away their spare time on Facebook. There are numerous social networking sites that grew up out of the Facebook explosion. On the professional side of the fence there is Linked In. The snobby, we are better than everyone else, version of Facebook. It's Facebook with a major attitude. But everyone seems to like it, because its "professional" :-)
Foodie -- Food Snob
It's not just that guy in the White House who likes arugula-- this was the decade of the foodie, when we all developed gourmet palates, turned on the Food Network, went to Williams-Sonoma, and ate classy gourmet pizza (how gourmet can a pizza slice get). It was a smoke screen to be honest. This created the high end food market out of nothing. The $30 a kilo gourmet heirloom tomatoes is just another product that we spent way too much money on in the 2000s.
Seriously, I mean seriously, Google came into existence in the 2000s. And thank goodness they did. Google has systematically dis-empowered major corporate control freaks like "Microsoft" and "MSN". Google became part of our brain function. You know that guy who was in the movie-- when was it? Just Google It. The company became a verb. Now that is beyond cool-- that is mondo-zietgeist-biblical.
Was that "Reality TV" or "Really Bad TV". I am not sure. The Reality TV era consisted of putting a carefully selected group of unstable individuals, who were guaranteed to get on each other's nerves, in a confined space. Watching them go mad and then follow them around with a crew of 20 cameras and remote video surveillance for days and days. Seriously, this is insanity. A room of editors would pour through the footage, pick out the good stuff (spending hours doing so) and adding sound effects to make it seem funny. If you love Reality TV I am sorry, I just don't understand the attraction.
Reality TV became the essential element of any good elevator or coffee machine conversation. "Did you see what ____ did on Big Brother last night" was the topic of the day.
The reality TV addiction spanned feuding Gosselins of Jon&Kate Plus 8 to American Idol to Project Runway to Americans Next Top Model (which I do watch, ok I admit it). At decade's end, the Heenes of Balloon Boy fame and the Salahis of gatecrashing fame give reality TV some unwanted attention.
It started innocently enough-- maybe a Canadian flag on the shoulder or a tribal symbol on the biceps. A few characters from the Chinese alphabet later (are you sure you know what those characters really mean) it seemed any hipster who really meant it had a full sleeve of tattoos. The trend extended to mothers and even tween idol Miley Cyrus.
Thank goodness they have perfected the art of laser tattoo removal technology. Now they can charge us to add them and someone else can make money to remove them. Its an amazing business model.
R u still rding this sty? This has done more damage to the English language and any other language than jst abt anything ;-) This is the decade we start communicating in short hand. I have to learn new abbreviations every day and my 20-something friends take great pride in teaching me, as if I am some burned out daddy. But I humor them and go along with it. But I make sure I learn the abbreviation because if I don't, I will just look tragic and old by asking "what does that mean?".
Get used to it. Email is so over and it's so 00's.
The new social network introduced tweets, retweets, follows and trending topics-- as long as it fits into 140 characters.
The blue bird is cute but it's everywhere. Any trend like this has to run out of steam sooner or later. Remember the Chia Pet? Hypercolor? the Cabbage Patch Doll? and David Hasstlehoff? Need I say more.
A boon to lazy students everywhere, the open-source encyclopedia used the masses to police its entries and keep them accurate.
I was even able to find information about my favorite obscure Canadian 80s band "Cats Can Fly" and "Flippin to the A Side" on Wikipedia. I knew then that Wikipedia was damn cool.
The video sharing site was born in 2005. Political candidates in 2008 even had their own channels. Now I can't imagine how I would spend an evening at home without YouTube. I even went on some dates surfing YouTube together.