Younger generations have proven they are more mindful than Boomers think

Autumn Page, Staff Reporter

If you haven’t been living under a rock — or taking an internet cleanse — then you probably know something about recent internet drama. The Millennial and Gen Z generations are using these internet issues to promote and gain attention for social issues. Moreover, they’re using this attention to try and increase the accountability of influencers.

This is something Baby Boomers think younger generations only focus on, and that is simply untrue. Boomers have the idea that millennials and younger generations only focus on irrelevant issues, like internet drama and not the world issues. That’s the reason “the world is doomed,” according to them. 

Within this chaotic year, there has been plenty of internet drama — influencers attending and throwing big parties during a global pandemic and YouTubers in blackface and saying words they have no right to say. Influencers needed to be held accountable. 

None of this is exactly new, but as everything resurfaced once again the responses have changed from a year ago. Instead of people discussing the drama and what they think, the common response was about how ridiculous it was. 

A YouTuber and TikToker named Nikita Dragun threw a birthday party for another influencer named Larray on July 21. The party had reached maximum capacity and got to the point where there were lines outside to get in. The Hollywood Fix interviewed and talked to the influencers that attended, and there were no masks or social distancing in sight. 

We all know this is incredibly stupid and seemingly irrelevant on surface level. These influencers are located in Los Angeles, California — a city in one of the biggest COVID-19 hot spots. So not only are there chances to spread it throughout the party, but to the different “Hype Houses” of TikTok and everyone they come into contact with. This could be other influencers, their family, people at the grocery store or gas station and fans. 

Dragun posted about it the next day, and the outrage was clear. Multiple comments discussed how irresponsible it was — especially as an influencer who kids look up to — and reminded the influencer that COVID-19 still exists. The majority of the comments had the same theme — the only people who didn’t mention the virus were verified influencers (I’m just going to leave that there). 

Generations who use platforms like Instagram, TikTok and Twitter are getting older and have become more outspoken about things like COVID-19, racism, pedophilia and sexism. I’m not surprised at all about the reaction. 

Shane Dawson, a YouTube veteran with over a decade of content on the platform, has always been very controversial. He’s done blackface, joked about pedophilia and used racial slurs. Last month this all resurfaced, and people have demanded he be held accountable. Let’s just say his “apology” was lackluster. 

The comments were discussing what he did for years and hasn’t seemingly changed from an outside perspective. The internet hasn’t been able to forgive his racist past, along with his pedophilia. He lost more than 700,000 subscribers on YouTube and similar numbers on his other social media accounts. 

Another prominent YouTuber, Jeffree Star, owner of Jeffree Star Cosmetics, was involved in a controversy. Like Dawson, Star’s racist past has been brought up. His apology was half-baked, and then a small mention of the Black Lives Matter movement in the middle, but never included resources, petitions or a personal pledge of donation. This made it seem like he was just bringing it up to take some heat off of the situation. It also didn’t help that he promoted his next makeup launch at the end.

As you can guess, it got to the point where Star turned off the comments.

All of this has become such a big deal now compared to the past because there are so many social injustices within the world, and our leaders help enable that. Boomers also don’t really understand how effective social media can be when it comes to social injustices and raising awareness. 

Internet drama isn’t what everyone “focuses” on — it’s the underlying issues and the realization that there’s more going on in the world. Influencers should be held accountable for their irresponsible and problematic actions.