I thought I would be one of those people to never download the app. One of my friends kept urging me to download TikTok because I was missing out. I would roll my eyes, but all it took was one summer.
I fell a victim to TikTok. I have no shame now as I know the app has one billion monthly users. The app has become a worldwide phenomenon and is used for anything you can imagine.
From businesses to tutorials and comedy skits, this app has it all and is customized to your liking. I believe this app has been educating us all.
When the very first months of isolation began for everyone last year, the major question that was asked was, “What are we going to do at home?” Being on our phones and computers seemed to be the obvious answer, however, we went beyond that statement and learned more about how to learn from our devices.
We are coming into an era now where we are not resenting technology but embracing it and incorporating it into our lives.
We are using what is on our phones as tools to entertain and educate ourselves. Taking what was supposed to be a simple communication device and reinventing it as a mass communication device.
This is how trends are created and reached large audiences. Influencers then take the platform and do what they will. Whether that is informing, advocating, or simply being hysterical.
While TikTok algorithms vary depending on the person, the influential power still reaches out to any consumer. I am a food person, and so when the whipped coffee (dalgona) trend emerged, it was all over my “For You Page.”
The famous “Gigi Hadid” (penne alla vodka) pasta became a staple dish to make over the summer. While I was watching food videos be made by content creators, it was other creators telling me what the dishes are actually called and where they originated.
I was learning two topics in one video. The food side of TikTok is endless, and the more I interact with that side, the more content I receive.
I have learned as well how to eat a little healthier whilst in a dorm. At the time, I would not think I was gaining relative information from the popular app, but subconsciously I am learning something every day and applying it to my life.
I have learned from Hyram Yarbro, the best facial cleanser for my type of skin and which products I need to switch out. I switched, and my skin is majorly improving.
The time I would have needed to spend at the dermatologist is saved now. Haircare products, to cheap cosmetics and clothing brands, I have saved not only time researching for the best products but money.
My father has even learned a way to clip my dog’s nails by applying peanut butter to plastic wrap and placing it on his head.
It has been the most ridiculous method I have seen, yet it worked. Some people have not realized it yet, but social media is a large community, therefore we all have common interests, goals and lessons to be taught. Our normal routines or lifestyle have changed due to 15-60 second videos.
There may be stigmatism that learning information from a social media platform is bad. I fact-check and discuss subjects with other people, but what is the difference between learning from TikTok than other social platforms?
We use Twitter as an immediate news source or Facebook for articles. TikTok is another one of those platforms that becomes a source. What we learn and are influenced by in this era is in the media.
No matter what shape or form it comes in. As the consumers then, we should interact and shape the platforms to the best of their ability.
TikTok’s intentions may have been just to entertain and make people laugh. I used to see it purely as an app for comedy and did not find the purpose to download it.
However, the app has exceeded expectations over the last couple of years. The app has expanded and adapted from its original purpose.
That is not due to the creators of the app, but due to the content creators within the app. Taking the tools given, people have made the platform an all-around classroom.
We are bouncing ideas and life skills off each other that would not originally be thought of. The app has become an outlet and source for people to educate and teach.