GEN Z MEDIA
Youth-led publications are on the rise
Regardless of any media company’s medium, demographic, or purpose, one thing is for certain: anyone that neglects to adapt their content to the needs of the newer generations will not last long. Recognizing this, Gen Z perspectives in media have become especially valuable. Multiple organizations have managed to distinguish themselves from the rest by prioritizing Gen Z voices, and were in fact created with this very purpose in mind. Here are three emerging media platforms by and for Gen Z.
What started as a global, grassroots print-only publication in 2018 has since grown into a multi-media community. The magazine’s demographic is, as the name suggests, Gen Z. More specifically, though, their target audience is high school and university students who are passionate about social activism. The works Gen-Zine publishes runs the gamut from service articles to op-eds to personal essays. With a goal of showcasing Gen Z voices that the mainstream media is more inclined to overlook, Gen-Zine’s social agenda has a decidedly progressive slant. The magazine also has auditory content in the form of their aptly named podcast “The POD.”
Gen Z’s opinions on current events are often dismissed by older generations as too politically polarized. While Gen Z arguably eschews centrist politics to a greater extent than the generations before it, as a self-identified “non-partisan educational platform,” The Conversationalist is a Gen Z-led media startup dedicated to showcasing the diversity of Gen Z’s opinions. As is evident from even a passing glance at The Conversationalist’s website or social media presence, the focus of this youth-centered organization is to break the “echo chambers” of monolithic opinions that politically active Gen Z-ers are sometimes prone to fall into. In their talk show “POVz”, for example, The Conversationalist provides contrasting perspectives by Gen Z-ers on current controversies.
This Gen Z-led digital and print magazine, whose mission is “to highlight incredible youth doing groundbreaking work in all creative industries,” covers just about everything that matters to young people, from fashion to music, social justice to mental health. Our Era founder and editor-in-chief Lucy Ivey, 18, launched the publication early on in the pandemic; in the two years since, Ivey and her team have pulled off partnerships with pioneering brands like Steve Madden, interviewed Gen Z icons including Olivia Rodrigo, and garnered fawning press coverage from youth culture publications Seventeen and Hypebae. Earlier this year, they even caught the attention of Instagram, which led to a special collaborative issue spotlighting creators in the mental health space.