TikTok: the Trend that Hasn’t Timed Out

0

BY ALEXIS WALSTROM alexis.walstrom@go.minnstate.edu

TikTok on the … app?

There’s a new mobile application sweeping across the nation that has captured the attention of the entire Generation Z. TikTok is a trending app that has captured the hearts—and screens—of GenZ’rs and millennials alike. Unfortunately, there’s no relation to Ke$ha’s 2009 hit, “Tik Tok,” but it is available to use in videos created in the app.

Interview with Worthington

What is it?

TikTok is a rebrand of Musical.ly, another popular video-creating mobile application. The Musical.ly app existed for two years, until August 8, 2018, when it was bought out by a company in Korea who then changed the name to TikTok.

TikTok is a rebrand of Musical.ly, another popular video-creating mobile application. The Musical.ly app existed for two years, until August 8, 2018, when it was bought out by a company in Korea who then changed the name to TikTok.

Anna Elgersma, a sophomore at MSUM studying biochemistry, described the app as being “a Facebook or Instagram kinda thing, but it’s only videos.” Elgersma also compared TikTok to Vine, an app in which users could create 6-second videos, and was shut down in 2016.

TikTok is a platform for people of all demographics to share their creativity and interests with others online. One MSUM student, Matthew Worthington, has acquired quite a following on both TikTok and Instagram, where he has 463.6k and 51k followers, respectively. Worthington posts videos of himself cosplaying as different characters from popular culture, such as anime characters, Disney character, and children’s characters like Swiper the Fox from Nickelodeon’s Dora the Explorer.

Picture from Worthington’s Instagram account, @princewelcomematt

How Does it Work?

Users, like Elgersma, are able to open the app and choose from two different tabs, a “For You” tab, and a “Following” tab. The “For You” tab has videos that are currently trending and videos that the app’s algorithm thinks you’ll enjoy based on videos you’ve previously liked. The “Following” tab only shows videos from creators you’re following. Once you click on one of these two tabs, Elgersma stated that it’s very easy to get lost in the app.

Anyone with the app can create a video to post. The process is relatively simple, but it can take a while depending on the video you’d like to make. Creators, like Worthington, first choose whether their video will be 15 seconds long or 60 seconds long, then pick an audio to attach, and record. 

“There is no way to edit it, so videos are filmed in a linear fashion,” Worthington stated. This means if you’re filming a video with multiple shots and one in the middle gets messed up, everything after it will have to be deleted in order to redo it.

In addition to all of the options for audio on the app, there are also several filters users can put on themselves, which are similar to filters that can be found on Snapchat and Instagram.

Why is it So Popular?

Millennials and Generation Z have been captivated by TikTok because it is a fun and simple app that allows them to share their creativity and passions with the rest of the world. The app is easily accessible to most people, making a wide user base.

“It’s easy to start … and a lot more immediate gratification than YouTube,” Worthington said. The algorithm TikTok uses can make it hard to get popular, with some videos spiking in views and likes, and others getting close to none.

“It’s a quick, easy thing to go through, and easy to get lost in because there’s a wide variety of things,” Elgersma said.

Though it’s not perfect, users and creators alike can’t get enough of it.

According to buisnessofapps.com, TikTok had over 800 million downloads as of October 2018. 

If you would like to check out Worthington’s cosplays, both his TikTok and Instagram are @princewelcomematt. 

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: