Gen Z and Humor
Due to the climate that Gen Z (18-24 year olds) has grown up in, their sense of humor and the ways they consume humor are different from those generations before them. To understand what is humorous for Gen Z and how they consume it, information was gathered on which media Gen Z consumed humor and how often these forms of media came into contact with them. Information was also gathered on what kind of content North American Gen Z-ers self-reported as the most appealing and for what reasons.
Information suggests that Canadian Gen Z-ers spend 6.3 hours daily on social media platforms. Furthermore, Gen Z self-reported that the preferred platforms for consuming humor are YouTube (51%), Instagram (11%), and Snapchat (9%) and that the most appealing types of content are humor with strong imagery, good music, strong imagination and creativity, and a story line. Given the amount of time Gen Z spends on these social media platforms and emphasis on humor, it is assumed that these platforms make up majority of how they consume humor.
Types of Gen Z Humor
Three-fourths of Gen Z prefer humorous content in ads as well as a strong story line and good music. The majority of communication between Gen Z are through the use of images. Gen Z appreciates authenticity and transparency in the media they consume due to growing up in a time when access to information is instantaneous. We assume this standard is applied to all media, including the humorous media that is three times more important to Gen Z than celebrity media. Gen Z also self-reported to appreciating media that appeals to their sense of creativity, emotions, imagination, strong story lines, and good music. Those in Gen Z that are a part of subcultures appreciate media that specifically identifies with their subculture and value word of mouth especially. Given the nature of social media, Gen Z is connected instantly to millions of people's individual stories, emotions, and opinions. Gen Z is drawn to social media as a platform for humor because it highlights the type of content they enjoy most.
How Gen Z Consumes Humor
Gen Z self-reported to the platforms in which they consume media and how often they use different forms of media. Although Television was reported as the most often used source of media used by North American Gen Z, the three most preferred sources of humorous content were social media platforms.
— YouTube was the top rated preferred platform for humor by Gen Z at 51%.
— Instagram was the second most preferred platform for humor by Gen Z at 11%. Instagram is also a rapidly evolving social media and 28% of Gen Z rated it the most used social media platform.
— Snapchat was the third most preferred platform for humor by Gen Z at 9%. An average of 38% of Gen Z rated Snapchat their most used social media platform.
All in all, the humor that Gen Z enjoys (creative, image-heavy, and authentic) is mostly consumed on social media platforms (YouTube, Instagram, and Snapchat). The correlation between Gen Z's value of humor and time spent on social media makes sense because social media promotes the emphasis on creativity, transparency, and imagery that Gen Z uses to create and consume humor. The importance of humor, with over 70% of North American Gen Z-ers attracted to humor, can shape the social media platforms that Gen Z uses most for consuming humor such as YouTube seeing as 51% of Gen Z prefers this outlet for consuming humor. This is important because Gen Z accounts for 2 billion people worldwide which is 27% of the world's population. This is an interesting look into what 27% of the population, and 40% of Canada's future consumers, find funny and how they consume it.