BY GENEVA NODLAND firstname.lastname@example.org
The mobile app TikTok is a growing community with millions of users, and MSUM is home to one of its well-known creators.
If you don’t already know, TikTok is an app on which users create and share short videos. There are many more steps and details that go into creating a TikTok. You can find out more here.
But, if you’re already familiar with the app and its workings, you might appreciate one user who has climbed his way to the tops of TikTok fame. Matthew Worthington, or as some might know him,princewelcomematt, is a TikTok creator with 514.3k followers, and he lives right here at MSUM on campus.
Who is @princewelcomematt?
Worthington is in his second year at MSUM, majoring in a Bachelors of Fine Arts in musical theater. He created his TikTok account in June 2018 and has been gaining traction over the six months, putting him at over a half-million followers.
What kind of content does @princewelcomematt make?
It began as a joke, but Worthington said after his first TikTok, he found that it was actually fun to do. His first few videos included jokes that weren’t for all ages, but as he gained a following, Worthington’s content moved to be more “kid-friendly.” The majority of his fan base ranges from ages 12-18, but has some on either end of the spectrum as well.
“I don’t make things with too many swear words, inappropriate content or sexual content,” Worthington said.
Worthington will often ask his classmates to be in TikTok videos of his. One of his friends who has appeared in a few videos is Austin Moores. Moores is a senior, getting his Bachelors in Fine Arts in acting. Moores met Worthington through MSUM, and he said they clicked instantly.
A majority of Worthington’s content involves dressing and acting as all sorts of characters, known as cosplay, for videos. He goes to Goodwill and then alters as needed for the character design. Most TikTok videos are made in his dorm, or around campus with friends. Depending on the exact type of video, it can take a while to prepare for.
“He (Worthington) really commits to it and really has fun with it,” Moores said.
Matthew Worthington, princewelcomematt, TikTok video.
Moores said Worthington will ask him and their friends to make videos sporadically. After class Worthington will grab a group of their classmates and do whatever may be trending at the time.
Matthew Worthington, princewelcomematt, and friends TikTok video.
What’s it like for @princewelcomematt?
Since reaching a half-million followers, a few things have changed in Worthington’s life. People have reached out, asking him to feature their song in one of his TikTok videos. Recently, the company Pizza Hut asked him to create a commercial. Moores said he has been with Worthington when people recognize him in public a few times, and Worthington said it can be a bit awkward.
“I can’t say everybody is nice and cute and pleasant.It’s rather jarring,” Worthington said. “They don’t know what to say and neither do you.”
Worthington has attended events in the past and met up with friends there, but later this month he will be attending as a guest of honor at Anime Fusion in Minneapolis and, for one of the first times since gaining a large following, meeting up with fans.
What does @princewelcomematt really think of TikTok?
TikTok has increased in popularity among other social media platforms over the last year, particularly the past few months. People of all ages, popular internet celebrities and companies are on TikTok. Worthington compared it to the mobile app, Snapchat, saying, “everybody knows what it is.”
“It used to be, ‘oh isn’t this app dumb’ and now they’re realizing, ‘oh wait, this a good marketing tool,” Worthington said.
What has been @princewelcomematt’s experience on TikTok?
Through the app, Worthington has made friends with other creators who live all over the nation—such good friends, that one creator in particular, phreckledcosplay, is going to be a part of Worthington’s wedding this January. Moores described TikTok as a community “like no other.”
“I think it’s a brilliant app for creators …,” Moores said. “It allows people to relate on a different level other than through text.”
Although there are still many questions and frustrations surrounding the app, creators like Worthington have become a prevalent part of a growing community.