28 12 / 2012
There is a big difference between the way a 24-year-old and a 19-year-old see social networking. It seems like a small gap, but some crucial changes happened during this time that has most certainly differentiated today’s teenager from yesterday’s…
My sister is 19 and I am 24. I was 19 when the iPhone came out, and I was a senior in high school when I first got Facebook, a year before it launched publicly.
My sister was 14 when the iPhone came out, first got on Facebook at age 13. Unlike myself, her friends have had smartphones (and have been taking pictures with them) throughout their entire high school (and now college) career. And many of them are now documented neatly on her Timeline.
The pressure to maintain an appropriate, attractive presence on the Internet has weighed on me since college. It’s been with her for her entire life.
This is the difference between the people writing about Snapchat and the people using it.
My sister is one of the biggest Snapchat users I know, and the pictures she sends me of herself are awful. That’s not the usual for her. She’s 19, and will force our family to stand in 100-degree weather for hours to get the perfect shot of her smile.
The snaps she sends me could be called ugly — her on the porch, in the dark, with a goofy look on her face. If she was posting this on Facebook, or Instagram, or even sending it to me on MMS, it wouldn’t be the same picture. It wouldn’t be so ugly.
But there’s an intimacy that comes with Snapchat that makes those pictures safe, and much more enjoyable than seeing yet another perfect picture of my sister on Facebook. I see her as she really is."
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