Nichelle Narcisi just busted out with ExceptYou, a bad-ass execution of reverse-psychology designed to get the young’uns to vote. Here’s the blurb:
I don’t care what you think of my writing or my message. You’re not included in what is going on here. Your opinion is worthless and everyone here knows it. Everyone else has something worthwhile to contribute, except you.
You’re the outcast. Everyone else has this figured out, except you. Everyone fits in, except you. Everyone, except you. Except you.
Exclusion is uncomfortable, isn’t it? So it’s surprising that so many of us 18-24 year olds have chosen to exclude ourselves by not voting.
If we’ve learned anything from MySpace and Facebook, it’s that my generation values being a part of the group and having a say. We’re mavericks of social networking, communication and internal organization. We become passionate about anything the peer consensus agrees to rally around, including skateboarding dogs. So why not focus that social muscle on something that really matters? Something like going to war. Or global warming. It’s obvious that we care about those things. Getting us to act is the hard part.
One reason we shy away from involvement may be that we’re actually too media savvy. We’ve spent our entire lives being bombarded by targeted advertising and we’re fully aware of it. We’ve become jaded and suspicious toward anyone who may try to persuade us, especially if it’s for our own good.
At the same time, all that marketing attention has fostered a feeling of entitlement. We want the messages we receive to be polished, entertaining and immediate, otherwise we can’t be bothered. The only thing we’re willing to invest time in is our social scene and the warm inclusive blankie that comes with having amassed a small army of MySpace friends.
So, how do you motivate us to vote? First you’ll have to jolt us out of that complacency. We want to be taken seriously, we hate being talked down to, and more than anything else, we’re afraid of being excluded. So make us feel awkward and uncomfortable. Make us the outsider and point your finger while you do it.