I just got through reading Staying Touch In Touch With Technology by Sam Grobart which was published on March 2, 2011 in the New York Times.
Personally I feel pretty damned insulted by this quote:
“New technologies are largely oriented to people under the age of 50,” Mr. Dychtwald said. “If you’re older than that, you have to muster the courage to ask your family how things work.”
Sorry Mr. Dychtwald I don’t know your age, but I am over 50 and I am part of a generation that developed and have grown old with these fancy tools that have been created throughout my adulthood.
I just get tired that so people many seem to assume that just because someone has some gray hair that they don’t know how to use this cool new technology that we get to play with or that we need to ask their kids or younger co-workers how to use these products. Well you know what happens when people “ass-u-me” something.
I have a feeling that many of those of us who have been using technology since punch cards/main frames, Vic-20s, Windows 1.0, Apple IIe up to all the new technology iPhones, Android Phones, iPads, with MacBook Pros who decided they wanted to play around with having Windows 7 installed on their Mac, just as something to do, know how to do more than many want to admit about using technology.
While we may not be the generation who developed many Web2.0 products like Twitter, Facebook, Evernote, blogging, LinkedIn and all the other SAAS (Software as a Service) at our disposal, I see more than a fair share of the users of those tools that are over 50.
Perhaps there are those who are over 50 who fit this negative stereotype, but I believe that there are many more of us that do not fit this stereotype. Many more of us than the younger generations want to admit, actually know how to use our present technology as well as or better than so many of those “younger” people or so-called digital natives.
I guess I just hate it when people make stereotypical statements and I am part of the group they are stereotyping, especially when it is so off base. Making broad sweeping statements like that are inaccurate and usually stated to cause a reaction from the reader. It did cause a reaction in my case and I am taking the time to blog about it and then broadcast it on Twitter, Facebook and the other social networks that I belong to. Wow who did I ask how to do that (just a little sarcasm)? Absolutely no one.
By the way the next time you see a gray haired 54 year old guy from Maine, I will probably be either in a Webinar learning how to use a new thingamajig or maybe even showing someone who is younger how to use the tools that are out there.
I don’t think that I have to muster the courage to ask my family how things work, especially when it comes to computer technology, it is usually the other way around.