TikTok on the road
In August 2018, the Chinese internet technology company Bytedance killed Musical.ly and merged it with their app, TikTok. Although nothing regarding the app changed aside from the name and icon, the merge raised TikTok’s user base by 30th, making it one of the foremost successful Chinese apps within the world.
This monumental name change not only affected the 800 million people who had already downloaded Musical.ly, however it really hit the St. Pius X community hard additionally.
“Are they the same company?” asked junior Henry Guynn.
Senior Jared Druss was equally confused. “No. What?” he said once asked if he had ever heard of TikTok.
To use an analogy that’s more familiar for St. Pius students, economics teacher Philip Cook explained, “I guess it’s like PowerSchool Learning and haiku.”
Luckily, frequent TikTok creator senior Clare Hungeling knew all about the change.
“Just for the record, I was along for the ride since it was Musical.ly,” said Hungeling. “I’ve actually had to educate plenty of people on the name change. People pretty much know about Musical.ly, but then people think TikTok’s a different thing, however it’s the exact same app simply with a scarier little icon.”
The new icon had almost as massive of an impact as the name change. Between June and November of 2018, TikTok soared from the #7 app in the U.S.A. all the way to#2.
“That seems excessive,” aforesaid senior Patrick Leonard once told that five hundred fifty million Americans use the app daily. Senior Joe Shaub said “One of my guilty pleasures is to watch videos on TikTok,” he admitted.
There’s a lot of debate as to whether or not TikTok is a waste of your time or one
foremost entertaining apps on the
Freshman Karis Coleman explained, “I don’t have a TikTok account because I don’t have time for another social media app on my phone.” however wait a minute, Karis, is it just another social media app?
Senior Ansley Boykin said it’s not and that TikTok is totally different from similar apps like Snapchat.
“It’s the comedy that sets TikTok apart from other apps. I can always find something new and hilarious on the For You page,” she said.
TikTok allows its users to make fifteen second videos and then share them with other “creators.” TikTok creators often dance or lip synch to music provided by the app, act out short skits and participate in challenges. They can add effects or filters to their videos to enhance them.
“It’s the new vine,” Boykin said. “I suppose it has a lot of potential because it’s a format where creators can get out there and show their creative genius.”
While Instagram, Snapchat and Facebook have become places where individuals share the highlights of their lives with the world, TikTok is a place where a creator’s goal is to entertain fans and make humorous memes. The idea that TikTok is more of a creative outlet and source of amusement as opposed to a humble brag page is the reason why TikTok has grown in popularity so quickly within the past five months.
Challenge videos are all the rage on the app, as users take an original TikTok video and try to copy it with their own creative twist.
According to Hungeling, although she has done the “#spookychallenge” in which creators dance creepily to the song “Betty Boop,” she prefers to watch other people do challenges.
“My favorite challenge at the moment is the ‘#prettyboyswagchallenge’ where you turn yourself into an object or a character from something as the beat drops,” she said. “People can get extremely creative with it.”
Both Shaub and Guynn admitted to loving the “#hitormisschallenge,” while the #dontjudgemechallenge is Boykin and junior Aggie Brewster’s favorite.
“The Tonight Show” host Jimmy Fallon recently created his own challenge called the “#tumbleweedchallenge” in order to interact with his viewers. He had his audience send in videos of themselves rolling on the ground like a tumbleweed to a specific song. Celebrities like Fallon, Nick Jonas and Khloe Kardashian are all TikTok creators that have helped the app gain popularity.
Much like Instagram and Facebook, TikTok also offers its creators the ability to like and comment on different videos. Creators can be one another’s fans, and gaining as many followers as you can is very enticing.
“I just hit ten fans on Christmas and let me tell you, it was the best present I could’ve received,” Hungeling said. “I immediately made a video just shouting out my thanks toall my fans and right after I posted it I got an eleventh fan!”
Not everyone does it for the fans, though. Guynn’s TikTok bio states, “Just for fun, not fame,” while Boykin said, “I keep my account on private because it’s a thing I do for myself. It’s the most fun I’ve ever had, if I’m being honest.”
So although TikTok can be an app where creators could potential gain their 15 minutes of fame, it doesn’t have to be. TikTok can also be used as a forum for those who wish to let their creative thinking run free and the place where some of the internet’s best memes arouse. If you’re looking for a new hobby this year, download TikTok, and I promise you’ll be pleased.