OMG! Navy Calls MySpace Kids "Alien Life Force" (And They Hate the War, Too)
- From: Jack Linthicum <jacklinthicum@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
- Date: Mon, 01 Oct 2007 05:45:16 -0700
Parental suspicions confirmed by the highest source. There are some
illustrative visuals at the cite.
OMG! Navy Calls MySpace Kids "Alien Life Force" (And They Hate the
By Noah Shachtman EmailSeptember 28, 2007 | 6:10:00 PMCategories: Info
The MySpace generation is a "somewhat alien life force," a Navy
recruiting presentation contends -- with a language and lifestyle
that's almost unrecognizable to adults. And because the kids are such
"coddled," "narcissistic praise junkies," they'll be beyond tough to
bring into the military. Propensity to join the armed forces among
these so-called "millennials" has dropped to as little as 3%; that's
down from 26% in 2001.
Entropic Memes uncovered the bleak, often unintentionally hilarious
report from the Annual Navy Workforce Research and Analysis
Conference, which also glumly notes that the Iraq war has brutalized
recruiting efforts. Up to two-thirds of millennials are "less likely
to join the military" because of the war, according to the
The typical kid today "has always been online," and "has never known a
world without digital phones." Because of that, he a worldwide social
network; his "best friend may be Chinese," the report says. "Teens
are creating new forms of social behavior that blur the distinction
between online and real-world interactions -- and largely ignore the
difference between the two." The dual life is "creating a whole new
language." The presentation warns recruiters that they're liable to
experience more than "just a generation gap" with today's kids. To
older military types, the youngsters will appear to be "a somewhat
alien life force."
To be able to speak to these creatures, the presentation offers some
handy translations, like "suuuuuuup!!! (Translation: What's up?)." It
also invites recruiters to make sure they know about emoticons,
Napoleon Dynamite, Bolt, "Brangelina's baby," and the Black Eyed Peas.
The report also notes important cultural distinctions between the
youth of today and the youth of yesteryear. Kids live such busy,
structured life, that they often use "planner[s] before middle
school." They are also unusually tight with their "active, involved,
These "kids grew up hearing nothing but praise, all the time,
everywhere. Recent childhood has been defined by ego-stroking...
[They] can get disgruntled if not praised for simply 'showing up' at
work," according to the report, which calls the millenials "a
All of which makes today's youth particularly unlikely to join the
armed forces. The "military [is] not on kids' radar," according to
the presentation -- college is. The report quotes an unnamed
teenager, as saying "(If I join the Navy) I'd miss out on having the
excuse of being a college kid and being irresponsible."
The Iraq war has only discouraged millennials further. Up to 32% say
it has made them "less patriotic," and up to 67% say they are "less
likely to join the military."
UPDATE: Navy Times hops aboard.
In the slides a Navy presenter described the patios [sic] of the
young, a mishmash of acronyms and nonwords used in text messages and
social networking sites; in one sample exchange a hypothetical young
person asks "wat up dude" and another responds "nmu (Translation: Not
Potential Navy recruits are "coddled" and "unrealistically
impatient," the presentation says, and would "expect an open and
transparent environment" if they enlisted. It also advises commanders
to expect young people linked together by the Web and cell phones to
"share their Navy experiences" and that "some of them may not be worth
So does Boing Boing.
Yeah, these darn kids today, with their weird abbreviations,
acronyms -- all that impenetrable insider jargon. That's alien, all
right. Not like the military at all.
And so does Wonkette.
Oh the kids with their arcane abbreviations and NME (translation:
New Musical Express) approved British rock bands. Guys, if Mark Foley
could figure it out, you can too.
But why do so many of these teens hate America? Oh, right, still
Iraq. And their out-there Jetsons lifestyle!
...his "best friend may be Chinese," the report says.
My god, Chinese?? Ye gods, is nothing sacred in this godless
post-9/11 Facebook world?
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