Closing the Generation Gap

Arlington, VA - A collection of generations from public media convened at the NETA Conference and CPB Public Media Thought Leader Forum held in Arlington, Virginia, to focus on the future of education and media. Technological innovation broke the mole for education and media, making it possible to embrace and connect with each generation. Across Indian Country, there are true Digital Natives who are empowered and engaged in media shifts made possible by technology. Digital Natives are those born after the 1980s and are comfortable in the digital age, they are the Millennials and Generation Z. Generation X’er Melissa Begay and Native Public Media’s thought leader reminisces. “Remember the day when you had to wait to hear your favorite song on the radio or when you had to press record on your cassette player to create your mixed tape? Remember the day when flipping through the pages of an Encyclopedia was how you learned more about an insect or another country? Or watching a movie at home using VHS (Video Home System) was cool? These mediums are no longer familiar to younger generations because the way we entertain and educate are now redefined because of innovation.”

“We are in an era where a plethora of media platforms dictate how people communicate, socialize, and obtain information. The essence of this is that language is the basis to connect generations and to close the generation gap. But there are still challenges. Even though Digital Natives are always connected, thanks to the variety of media platforms at their fingertips, there is still little content,” states Begay.

NETA conference speakers shared their experiences and creative inspiration about how to reach, engage new audiences on emerging media platforms. “The key takeaway for me was to understand the trends of each generations and how they drive today’s media and culture,” Begay explains.