Gen Z Prefers Video

August 16, 2022

This tweet went viral and understandably shocked some folks in my generation. From manuals to e-mail written communication has been a bedrock of communication for us. As someone who prefers written to verbal and video communication it highlighted a reality I have been noticing for a while: the written word is losing.

Nowhere is this more evident than YouTube. A lot of content that would make great blog posts are now twenty minute videos on their platform. I find myself looking for the answers to things on YouTube and perusing the automated transcripts or playing videos at high speed. If you want to really see the difference compare the GameFAQs content for Mario Kart 8 Deluxe to the videos for it on YouTube.

This shift does not negate the advantages of the written word. It is more durable, easier to skim, and simpler to index and search. I also experience greater retention and comprehension when using written material versus videos, and doubt I am alone. I am using this shift to try and convert important written stuff into videos using tools like recorded Keynote presentations for others, but as a consumer, written will always win for me.

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This work by Matt Zagaja is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.