MTV/AP Study What Makes 18-34s 'Happy'

Two unlikely partners--the youth-targeting MTV and decades-old Associated Press--offered results Monday on a joint seven-month study looking to gain insight into the psychographics of today's 13- to-24-year-olds, and specifically trying to determine "what makes them happy."

For MTV, it's business as usual. But for the traditionally print-focused AP, the findings might provide ways to maintain viability as fickle young people become primary media consumers.

The partners said the results reveal that young people "are generally very happy, optimistic about the future and have goals in place to achieve a happier tomorrow." But the levels of contentment have inconsistencies based on racial lines, faith and family dynamics, and levels of sexual activity. Sexually active young adults, as a rule, indicated "lower levels of happiness," the research partners said.

Results show that 65% of those surveyed are happy with their lives, and 62% think greater happiness will come later.



Also, research showed that non-Hispanic whites are happier than blacks and Hispanics. While 72% of whites say they are content, just 56% of blacks and 51% of Hispanics did.

Separately, 30% of blacks and Hispanics said family is "the one thing in life that brings them the most happiness," compared with 15% of whites.

In the faith area, 80% of those who cite spirituality as the most important thing in their lives report being happy with life overall.

On the financial front, 70% report wanting to be rich down the line, and close to half believe they will be.

No surprise for this demo--technology is a source of contentment. Fifty percent said the Internet by itself is a source of happiness. Nearly half said their cell phones are on 24/7.

Next story loading loading..