Arguably the most profound years in the lifetime of a human being, teenage (13-19 years) are also some of the toughest years emotionally. A transition period between being a child to growing up to be an adult, teenagers find themselves at the cusp of confusion. Teenagers today are equipped with many choices. Thanks to the internet and growing up in a digitized world, teens have access to information, tools and platforms that they interact with daily and have become an integral part of their lives.
With so much technology and devices at their fingertips, teens are more equipped to make better decisions– like selecting a career choice that appeals to them, learning a skill during vacations, finding music or art that inspires them, networking with peers or seniors to get internships or job opportunities.
But as teenagers navigate through their personal and digital lives, they are often also finding themselves at the receiving end of struggles like loneliness, cyberstalking, body dysmorphia, bullying, imposters, privacy invasion, identity theft and surveillance, among others.
A generation younger than the internet itself, teenagers– a cohort that the global marketing agencies have also taken liking to– are experiencing attention spans that last lower than an Instagram trend. From education courses marketed directly to high school and college students, to lending platforms designing loans specifically for teenagers and students and platforms that allow under 19 to showcase their talent with an aim to catch them young, teens are being sought by companies who have laid out a platter of offerings for them. Even with an overload of content on the internet, there’s very little structured information for young people to make major life decisions like opting for career choices or navigating through personal issues in a vulnerable age.
As teenagers navigate through their personal and digital lives, they are often also finding themselves at the receiving end of struggles like loneliness, cyberstalking, body dysmorphia, bullying, imposters, privacy invasion, identity theft and surveillance, among others.
Through this story project we aim to highlight the impact of technology and social media on teenagers. A generation that talks openly about mental health troubles, defines pop culture and has taken to activism early in life, teens are a mirror to the future. Their challenges, advantages and how they chose to build their future as the world evolves are the stories we want to share through this project.
The last two years have significantly changed the course of education with children as young as five and teenagers living in the most remote areas of the country having access to smartphones and the internet to attend online classes. To help tell their stories better, we will speak to teenagers across different spectrums including urban, affluent teens and those residing in lower tier towns to understand how technology affects their lives. To understand the challenges faced by teenagers today, we will engage and collaborate with a community of experts, including educators, counsellors and psychologists.
We aim to tell the stories at the intersection of technology and society and the theme of exploring tech and its impact on teens sits right at the heart of that intersection.
Tell us what you think we’re missing out in our coverage at firstname.lastname@example.org.