Group 4

The Discourse: Day one of lockdown or Zayn leaving 1D – what’s Gen Z’s generationally defining moment?

A viral TikTok just might have the answer


Amidst a sea of clickbait-y generational discourse, one TikTok has launched a convo worth… clicking on. On February 7, TikTok user @victoria_juliet initiated a conceptual inquiry into the hearts and minds of the new gen… by asking what Gen Z’s moment is, i.e., the pivotal event that all members of a cohort can look back on with clear memory. The Silent Generation’s moment is the assassination of JFK, she explained, Boomers’ is the moon landing, Gen X’s is Watergate, and Millennials’ is 9/11. As for Gen Z? The comment section had a lot to say.

The most frequent answer was March 13, 2020, AKA the day that President Biden declared a national emergency in response to the first wave of COVID-19. Makes sense… But many other cultural moments were suggested, from the day Zayn announced his departure from One Direction to the day beauty guru Tati Westbrook made internet history by dropping “BYE SISTER”, her controversial 40-minute video takedown of James Charles, then the biggest beauty creator on the platform (the drama that ensued was so major that it earned a detailed timeline and later, reflections on how it changed the creator economy forever). Without further ado, here are a few of our fave claims, straight from the comment section: 

For more content like this, explore the rest of the Digiverse, or connect with us on TikTok or Instagram. If you’re a brand or business and want to inspire your audience in innovative ways, reach out to our strategic & creative lab