In the Demo

In the Demo

A show about the stories that get told about groups, how those stories got made, what we think those stories get wrong. And why it matters. Your hosts, Farrah Bostic and Adam Pierno look at the data behind the narrative. Hosted on Acast. See for more information.


May 16, 2024 71 mins

Millennials are reframing their generational identity as they enter homeownership and parenthood, but broken systems remain. Nostalgia for a pre-internet era offers an escape, and reflects a yearning for IRL experiences and human connection in an automated and mediated world.

Anne Helen Petersen, author and cultural critic, joins host Farrah Bostic to discuss the evolving narratives surrounding millennials and Gen Z. They explor...

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Preconceived notions and media narratives have warped perceptions of social media and internet culture, shaping misleading stories about generations. A critical look beyond the headlines reveals the complex realities of how people of all ages engage with online platforms in nuanced ways.

Farrah Bostic and Adam Pierno welcome Rebecca Jennings, a reporter at Vox covering internet culture, to unpack the flawed assumptions and evolv...

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April 18, 2024 64 mins

The nostalgia and ownership that younger generations feel toward the music and culture of the 90s is fascinating. In this episode of In The Demo, Farrah and her guest Rob Harvilla, host of the 60 Songs that Explain the '90s podcast, explore why the decade holds such a powerful allure for those who never experienced it firsthand.

They discuss what accounts for this cross-generational appeal, from the mythologizing of the 90s in m...

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April 4, 2024 75 mins

Growing impatience with generational stereotyping has sparked a critical reexamination of how we categorize and analyze age cohorts. Despite Generation Alpha still being born, that won't stop consultants and pundits from making sweeping predictions about who they will be and laying out dubious prescriptions for how they should be raised. By scrutinizing the motives behind labeling Generation Alpha, the absurdity of predicting the t...

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March 21, 2024 51 mins

The demographic cliff - a controversial idea that declining population growth will trigger economic disaster. But is it real or just sensationalized clickbait pushed by those with an agenda?

Investment advisor Harry Dent popularized demographic cliff fears in the mid-2000s to sell his financial advice (and a book, of course). From there, it became a favored trope in education, where school administrators - from K-12 to college -...

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March 7, 2024 68 mins

When the Millennials came of age to enter the workforce (which took nearly 15 years) the media was awash in headlines about how to cater to this powerful new generation. Today, the headlines have turned to Gen Z. Farrah and Adam go deeper than the headlines to reveal that the story is still about Millennials. Reminiscent of the treatment of Gen X, Gen Z is constantly compared to their elders, but worse, many writers and researchers...

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February 22, 2024 75 mins

In this episode, Farrah and Adam discuss the role and effectiveness of strategy in advertising, including how connected it needs to be to cultural trends, consumer insights, and business realities. And then - they take a deep dive into an article by Richard Huntington in WARC, "The Future of Strategy 2023: Marketing is in desperate need of a reality check" in which he agrees with our premise that generational segments are astrology...

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February 8, 2024 61 mins

The best advertising reveals something you’ve thought for a long time about a product, service or its users (or yourself!) and presents in an unexpected way. Either for a laugh or some emotional response. Today, we’re seeing advertisers take broad stereotypes of generational segmentations and paste them directly into ads. The results are, um, not great. 


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January 25, 2024 60 mins

Adam and Farrah commence a new season, and in the spirit of the new year, take a look at recent Millennial headlines and found that... nothing has changed, and nothing ever will.


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January 22, 2024 60 mins

A special drop in our feed - the inaugural episode of Farrah's new show Cross Tabs, released on Iowa's GOP Caucus day, January 15, 2024.

Host Farrah Bostic (In the Demo Podcast, The Difference Engine) and pal Paul Soldera (Equation Research), set the table for what Cross Tabs is all about: demystifying what polls are and how they work.

Mentioned links:

  • Jill Lepore's "Politics and the New Machine" [The New Yorker]
  • Jill Lepore's ...
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Our special guest for our final episode of the year is our good friend Faris Yakob. He and his wife Rosie are the force behind the consultancy Genius Steals, a nomadic strategic and creative consultancy. Faris is also the author of a book about how advertising works through the lens of the concept of attention. It's called, Paid Attention which is now in its 2nd edition. He has been at a variety of media and advertising agencies th...

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November 23, 2023 2 mins

We are taking this Thursday off for Thanksgiving, sorry to our non-American listeners! We will be back with one more episode in December before pausing to work on Season 2, which is already under way. Please rate and review us on Apple Podcasts or your podcast app of choice. You can email us with questions or thoughts - adam@inthedemopodcast and farrah@inthedemopodcast.

In The Demo, a podcast about how stories of groups are cre...

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November 9, 2023 74 mins

Is your generation your identity? What happens when your actual life starts to veer away from the story of your life? In this episode, we take a look at the way some members of the Millennial generation are starting to experience a mid-life identity crisis as they realize that they did in fact become married, home-owning, parenting adults with retirement savings. We examine these "getting older" Millennial narratives and what the ...

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Adam and Farrah regroup to discuss what they've learned from past episodes featuring Cindy Gallop, Katy Coduto PhD, and Cristen Dalessandro PhD (find them in the feed!!) about Millennial sex, dating, and intimacy. You know, the stuff you have to deal with before you even get to worrying about whether they're getting married on time and having enough kids!

  • Intimacy, relationships, and generational differences. 0:00
  • Gender...
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Our third installment in a series of episodes exploring the part in between hookup culture on college campuses, and "failure to launch" narratives about Millennials living at home instead of getting married and starting families: those years when you're an adult, working, and figuring out what you want in a relationship (if you even want one).

In previous episodes we looked at the "social sex revolution" championed by Cindy Gal...

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September 28, 2023 43 mins

We're joined by Taylor Lorenz, author of Extremely Online: The Untold Story of Fame, Influence, and Power on the Internet to talk about how she had a front-row seat to many of the changes in media, memes, and Millennials over the course of her career from tabloid blogger to feature reporter for The Washington Post. We talk about the role of social media, the way incentives for media companies have evolved, how she proved internet c...

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We started with headlines from the New York Post and other extremely online publications and our research overall has shifted heavily into the journalistic media narrative arc that has been assigned to Millennials; a group we’re not even sure we would say exists. Now we decided we need to read the most visible and influential books over the past 20 years that coincided with shifts in the story. Up first, Kristen Soltis Anderson’s 2...

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The story about Millennials and dating is all about apps, sexting and ghosting - the habits of the toxically online. But it’s not all toxic - it can help people discover how to be intimate and confident in their romantic relationships. Still, real concerns about privacy and security abound. We sat down with Katy Coduto, PhD, an assistant professor of media studies at Boston University and author of the forthcoming Technology, P...

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We're starting a mini-series on intimacy. First up, Cindy Gallop is the founder and CEO of Make Love Not Porn. They are pro-sex pro-porn Pro-knowing the difference. It's her personal experience with Millennial lovers that opened her eyes to the challenges they were faced with in relationships. Intimacy has been pushed out of culture, and replaced with a variety of distractions, entertainments and stories. Cindy's direct style makes...

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August 1, 2023 55 mins

Generalizations can be damaging. In this episode, Benish Shah joins us for a conversation about how marketers, in an attempt to simplify the huge Millennial consumer group, over-simplified them en masse. She looks at how power structures are shaped, people on the margins are held there and others are pushed there by the narrative perpetuated to make it easier to sell things.

Benish Shah is a marketer, builder and advisor to comp...

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