It has been settled: If you were born from 1981 to 1996, you are a millennial. If you were born in 1997 or onward, however, I regret to inform you that you are in fact a member of a different generation entirely.
Pew Research Center, a nonpartisan fact-gathering institution known for its opinion polls and data collection in many areas, announced Thursday that it would formally consider the “millennial generation” to end in 1996. Many call the generation after millennials “Generation Z,” but Pew is not yet giving that group a name.
As Michael Dimock, president of Pew, points out in his piece, defining a generation isn’t an exact science. Other generations (such as the baby boomers) have a more direct line, but the definition of ‘millennial’ is mostly based on common experiences the generation shares. Pew uses the examples of how even the youngest millennials participated in some way in the 2008 presidential election. Older ones came into the workforce during the recession around that same time and have been shaped by it.
Based on a (super-informal, non-scientific) poll in our own newsroom here at The Post, a lot of staffers miss the new cut-off but still very much consider themselves to be millennials. To some on our staff, the line is drawn at whether one used the app musical.ly, while others say it’s based on whether one remembers 9/11.
On Twitter, people argued the early side of the generational line wasn’t quite right.
People born in 1997 weren’t excited either.
For what it’s worth, The New York Times asked readers a few weeks back what the new generation should be called. Suggestions included "The Thumbies" from a 91-year-old in the Bronx and “the Meme Generation” from an 11-year-old. Benton Molina, a 21-year-old based here in Athens, suggested “Spimes” from sci-fi author Bruce Sterling.