'We're not all bad'

Nelson teenagers dispute the media representation of their age group, saying the news frequently uses them as a scapegoat and only focuses on the negative.

The group of students from the region's high schools spoke of how they felt their age group was portrayed in the media.

Most of them felt that the news only covered their demographic when it succeeded on the sports field, or caused trouble on the booze.

Motueka High School student Liam Bloomfield, 18, said it was almost like there were two types of teenagers.

"You're either really, really awesome at everything you do, or you're one of the boy racers who drink every night."

Nayland College student Jordan Simpson, 18, said he could not remember the last time he saw a teenager do something good on the news.

"I can remember something bad. I would say that most people think teenagers, all they do is get drunk, do drugs, have sex and get into fights, and do that sort of stuff."

Fellow Nayland College student Gemma Winstanley, 17, agreed.

"People assume that because they see teenagers getting into crashes or getting drunk and doing stupid stuff then that's what we're all like, and it's really not."

Nelson College student Jack Rennie, 17, said the media focused on the negative aspects of those drinking.

"How many times do they put on, a few quiet drinks at Billy's house?"

"We're not all bad, let's be honest, we're good people."

Fellow Nelson College student Larry Banse, 17, said it was hypocritical.

"How many times did they do it when they were younger, so how can they judge?"

The Nelson Mail