Popular social media app, TikTok, has teenagers obsessed

Popular+social+media+app%2C+TikTok%2C+has+teenagers+obsessed

chicagotribune.com

Isabelle Kitay, Staff Writer

Created in September 2016 by ByteDance, TikTok is a social media platform that has since
become extremely popular amongst high school and middle school students. The short videos feature
different talents, lip-syncs, dances, and sometimes comedic sketches. The most commonly viewed
videos are ones where users are able to choose different sounds and songs to easily create their own
videos with music in the background.
TikTok can be accredited for creating a new movement of dance and song trends. In fact, there
are certain background songs and dances that are extremely popular, and are replicated by users
around the world.
There are many reasons for TikTok’s popularity. For one, it is advertised on other apps, such as
Instagram by different influencers because they use the platform to further promote their social status.
So, users follow famous Instagram or YouTube stars to see more of their content.
Something else to keep in mind is that the iPhone will not tell you the amount of time you spend
on the app or the battery percentage used, as it does for other social media apps. Thus, a user could
mindlessly spend hours on the app without even realizing it.
Another explanation for TikTok’s widespread popularity is the fact that there are so many
different types of videos. Because of this, children, teens, and even adults, can find something that
appeals to them on the app.
“My friends will send me funny and relatable TikTok videos all the time, and it is hard to stay off
the app,” said sophomore Sadie Mandel.
Just like any other social media app, there are a variety of users that have become “TikTok
famous.” But, what exactly is “TikTok fame?” And, how attainable is it for young users? Many people
make it a goal of theirs to become “famous” on the app. However, as users have come to realize, not
everyone can make it big in the TikTok world.
Nonetheless, people try to gain followers in a variety of ways: adding a hashtag “#foryoupage”
in their videos’ caption, posting their videos on other social media accounts, or posting videos daily.
Because it is unlikely that a user would make any significant money from this platform, the motivation for
becoming a TikTok star is more social than monetary.
“My friends and I have tried to create a popular video, but unfortunately we have been
unsuccessful,” said sophomore Ellie Shapiro.
Young teens see this emerging culture, and dream of getting involved, or someday getting
featured on the For You page. For those who have been successful, there is a house in Los Angeles
known as “The Hype House” that allows users to live their and cultivate their skills while posting with
other stars.
Some of the more popular members of “The Hype House” include Charli and Dixie D’amelio, Lil
Huddy, Addison Rae, and more. Not only does this group get access to a beautiful house in California,
but they have taken trips together to luxurious places such as Hawaii.
Among the residents of this house is the beloved Charli D’amelio: a regular 15 year old dancer
from Connecticut who has accumulated over 20 million followers and billions of likes on TikTok. Charli’s
original dances are recreated by users all over the world, and often become very widespread.
Not only do TikTok users recognize Charli’s dancing, but stars in the industry have also noticed
her. For instance, she was invited on stage to dance with Bebe Rexha at one of her concerts a few
months back, and even had a Super Bowl LIV commercial for Sabra hummus. Her sister Dixie D’amelio
is also very popular on TikTok.
“I enjoy watching Charli’s videos and love trying to recreate her amazing dances,” said
sophomore Talya Pecullan.
The current, well-known users may very well recycle over time, just as that the current members
of “The Hype House” could change in the coming months. It will be interesting to see how TikTok
advances throughout 2020, and if it still maintains its popularity and buzz; is this a phase, or is TikTok
here to stay? Only time will tell.