Members of Generation Y, or individuals born between the early 1980s and the early 1990s, were pretty much born with a smartphone in their hands and the blueish glow of a screen on their faces. We have adapted society to become more technologically savvy in more ways than one, and we have changed how we communicate and express ourselves on a daily basis.
The millennial generation has started to change society through the introduction of the smartphone as more than just a way to call your parents, but instead as an outlet for forms of self-expression.
While it may not be intentional, Instagram posts, Twitter hashtags and Tumblr threads all over the world have begun to take on an art form and serve as a millennial outlet of expression.
Before social media and technology revolutionized society, writing and poetry were art forms through which poets and authors could freely express and share their thoughts with others. Now, Generation Y receives most of its gathered information through the devices its members carry in their pockets, and Instagram, Twitter and other fan-favorite social media platforms have become popular ways of sharing our thoughts, ideas and feelings.
By composing a caption or a tweet in just 140 characters, other users can relate, repost and retweet whatever they chose. These posts have become the poetry of Generation Y.
Multiple Twitter accounts have been created with the purpose of sharing tweets that are relatable to those reading them by pinpointing thoughts that we all seem to share.
Twitter account @sosadtoday has dedicated itself to composing tweets that are semi-depressing but nevertheless true.
The account’s tweet, “excited to get over you by being obsessed with someone who doesn’t want me,” has more than 2,000 likes and more than 800 retweets.
How could so many Twitter users could relate to just 14 words?
Looking to Instagram, an account called @NOTES2MYSELFIE posts screenshots of the notes app, as if someone was typing notes to himself or herself. The account has 54,900 followers and the posts garner more than 1,000 likes and hundreds of comments. The posts are short — the average post is around a sentence or two — yet thousands of people are liking, commenting and downright relating to the one-sentence posts.
So it seems as if poetry has gotten a makeover. Although we may know fewer millennials who aim to become poets, poetry as an art has not died out or disappeared. It has taken on a new form and is being integrated into a world that is seen through a screen.
Poetry may no longer take the form of prose or be written in iambic pentameter, but millennials all around the world have bonded together to share their writing, maybe without even knowing that what they are writing in just under 140 characters is, in fact, poetic.
Expression is important, and forms of expression are ever-changing. We should embrace this new form of expression and see Instagram, Twitter, Tumblr and others as ways for millennials to express themselves through the medium they best understand.