Courtesy of Creative Commons
From selfies to memes, social media has a fair impact on our daily lives, whether we notice it or not. However, one specific age group is so deeply attached to it, many call them addicted: teenagers.
For as long as we can remember, teenagers have been said to have their own “culture,” their own trends, lingo, sense of style and more. The dawn of this new age of social media platforms taking over our lives has introduced new ways in which teenagers interact with one another.
“I love watching funny videos and staying up-to-date on the news,” sophomore Layla Obaid said. “You can instantly share things with people and family who might be across the world from you.”
It is no surprise that social media platforms are widely used by all types of people. A new platform that has recently surfaced is creating new trends and introducing a concept teenagers are obsessed with: TikTok.
“I think [Tik Tok is] really funny and allows teens to think about life in a more creative way, but it is certainly addictive,” Obaid said. “It was much needed after Vine’s death and it allows anyone to quickly become well known, and it’s so relatable.”
According to a 2018 CommonSenseMedia article, the popular app TikTok, originally known as musical.ly, is a fun platform that allows teens to create and share videos with their friends. TikTok is unlike any other social media platform in the sense that it is not only revolving around the content that the users you follow post. The app has a “For You” page which features content that is based off of the videos you’ve previously viewed and liked. Many compare TikTok to Vine, a previously popular app with a similar purpose that was later shut down.
“I think TikTok got so popular because it’s easy to get famous fast, and the whole idea of “fame” is incredibly appealing to lots of people,” sophomore Aaron Yue said. “It’s also always fun to see people’s different ideas and spins on trends.”
Just within the small time frame that TikTok has been admired, it has created various trends and styles which teenagers have incorporated into their every-day lives. For one, the idea of choreographing a dance to a specific song and performing it has grown extremely popular. In addition, the creation of different “characters” or “types of Tiktokers” is something not many platforms have experienced before. Some include VSCO girls, E-boys and E-girls–but the list doesn’t end there.
Similar to Vine, many users post unique skits or remakes of skits. These types of videos have commonly gone viral more often than say a lip-syncing or dancing video. Many popular Youtubers and online content creaters are still known for their skits and comedic style years after the end of their Vine career has ended.
“TikTok is influencing teenagers today because it’s an app where people can express their creativity, from dancing to art to the weirdest things anyone could possibly think of,” sophomore Jessica Qiu said. “There’s also so much to read and watch, and so many creators put out very interesting content.”
The TikTok algorithm functions in a specific way which makes it relatively easy for users to gain popularity from their content. The first thing many users do is hashtag their posts with “#foryou” or “#fyp”, in hopes of gaining attention on the “For You” page. Additionally, something many TikTokers have noticed is that the majority of the posts that have blown up on the app are created with the same few background songs. Many fans have theorized that TikTok recognizes that users enjoy these few songs and thus feature videos with those songs on more users’ “For You” pages. Many users also enjoy creating original audios and developing styles of their own.
“There’s always something new and engaging. Not only does it entertain me but it keeps up with my always increasing demand for entertainment since there’s always new content,” senior Vicki Yi said. “[TikTok] serves as a source of entertainment but also provides an outlet to be creative and express ones’ creativity.”