Some say TikTok is a little bit of fun. Some say it’s a Chinese espionage app. Others see it as a nightmarish glimpse in the dystopian future where our survival will depend on daily offerings of zany videos to our cruel but camp overlords.
As always the truth probably lies somewhere in between these extremes. TikTok hit the market in 2016 and made it easy for content creators to combine the latest pop hits with short videos.
The app may have been designed for individuals to express their creativity but come on, this is social media, you knew what was going to fucking happen. Predictably, it attracted everyone’s favourite social media users.
Influencers – vacuous, superficial, uninspiring influencers flocked to the app to get a slice of that big like pie. Aided by TikTok’s easy ability to share content to other platforms, the internet soon got flooded by influencers seductively dancing to videos. Just one step closer to hitting that pole really.
Furthermore, the app became a petri dish for every inane viral trend in existence. After all, creating unique content is hard. Copying what everyone else is doing under the guise of a “challenge” is easy and gets tons of sweet digital validation #filterswitch #toiletbowlchallenge.
So it looked like TikTok was going the same way of Instagram and would soon repulse even its devoted users. Then, something remarkable happened – the whole world got sicker than an eyebrow piercing on a 32-year-old skater. Coronavirus hit.
Isolation is a cruel mistress and there are only so many times a day you can pop the bonnet and give yourself a thorough service. Slowly but surely, each generation submitted to TikTok. Millennials, Gen X and in some surreal cases – boomers.
Normally, an app has officially lost all credibility once it hits the boomer level. TikTok achieved this in under 4 years. Record pace. Now, we were seeing footy coaches, crusty TV personalities and the formally washed up getting back into the ocean of social media attention.
We are now at a perilous place in history. You don’t want to see your loved ones cop COVID-19 but you’d be even more horrified if they were infected with the TikTok virus. Ultimately, it will happen.
Sure, the younger generation has been exposed to the grim reality of a life without any economic promise but we were exposed to their stupid dancing app – and we can all agree, that is a far worse reality for humankind.
Documenting the Human Zoo is thirsty work, so if you enjoyed what you read how about buying Belle a beer, ay?