The term ‘Fear of Missing Out’ (FOMO) entered the global lexicon around 10 years ago. In the age of continual digitalization and disruption today, this fear of missing out has in fact intensified, especially for the younger generation. On social media, staying connected with the network of friends that they have amassed, and keeping them continuously interested in their life through the self-expression and creativity that they feel define who they are, can result in emotional anxiety.
Youth fear of being ‘out of circulation’, as it was referred to by Malaysian youths in McCann’s study, because they worry that the lack of presence, even temporarily, can impact their social status. The need for approval is tangible and young people have described themselves sitting in front of the laptop continuously hitting refresh, waiting for someone somewhere to ‘comment’ on a post or ‘like’ a video that they have carefully crafted.
As we shift more and more into a digitalized and algorithmic culture, APAC consumers who previously did not show the same “tech-lash” as it had happened in the West, are now more cognizant of privacy and data security. 2020 could be the year of data privacy for APAC, with regulators across the region putting into effect policies that safeguard consumer data, ensuring that data is not being exploited in ways that are unbeknownst to users.
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