Young people born when the internet era was already in full swing feel pressure to have an “online brand” and are making sure to come up with one early in life.
And that, unsurprisingly, can be a cause of stress and anxiety.
Business Insider refers to them as Generation Z, and writes that while most are devoted users of social media, some are reaping the benefits of living with, and on the internet, such as becoming YouTubers with millions of subscribers.
19-year-old Amanda Steele is interviewed for the piece, revealing the pressure and influence on the personality of her YouTube audience of 2.7 million subscribers.
Steele, who now has a beauty-related vlogging career, started her channel in 2010. She says that negative comments and rigid expectations from some members of her audience put pressure on her at a young age.
According to the report, the teenager was expected to already have a solid and consistent brand, which, in turn, was a cause of stress.
However, the negative side of growing up exposed to the internet and the social media, and knowing no other kind of life, is something that affects not only successful YouTubers and other online stars, writes Business Insider.
It's hard enough to come up with a personal “brand” for youths in the offline world. But doing it in front of millions of others online, and attempting to present an image of success can be particularly trying, and cause anxiety and stress, the website writes.
And young people in America are growing up in this way under the watchful eyes of their peers, as a Business Insider survey has shown – with 53.75 percent of those interviewed saying they were on social media “to look at what other people are doing.”
Some, however, are waking up to the fact that the amount of time and effort put into presenting a perfect image online could be spent in more useful ways.
One of the Generation Z members who spoke for the website, 20-year-old Aynour Elkasaby, revealed the type of pressure her peers are putting themselves under when she said they should be “more confident in who they are and do things because they want to and not because they think they have to.”