Why do many people, especially Indians, hate TikTok? And why suddenly everyone around the world started hating it so much? TikTok was previously known as Musical.ly, where people uploaded lip-synch videos of themselves.
Musical.ly was first created in 2014 by Alex Zhu and Louis Yang. It was born from an idea for short-form education videos, but that idea failed.
In 2018, ByteDance, a Beijing-based tech company, acquired Musical.ly and merged it with its lip-synching app called Douyin. Hence, the breakout social media app TikTok debuted. ByteDance is run by CEO Zhang Yiming, who founded the company in 2012. The 35-year-old CEO comes from a background in software engineering.
The company first launched a news aggregator app called Toutiao. Since 2012, the company has launched many popular Chinese social apps. When ByteDance launched Douyin in 2016, the popularity of the app skyrocketed. It then spread its market globally through TikTok.
By September 2018, TikTok had more than one billion downloads, surpassing Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, and Snapchat in monthly installs. India had the most users on the app, contributing to nearly 44 percent of those downloads.
Before TikTok got banned in India, many celebrities opened their account on the app. Globally, celebs like BTS and BlackPink are also using the app.
India And TikTok: The Love-Hate Relationship
TikTok is the place where many trends started. Many small artists were able to make a living through the platform. It was quite a good source of income for many in India.
The banning of TikTok was debated a lot, but much of the Indian population was happy with this decision. Some said that India is a democratic country and banning apps or any form of censorship is dangerous on many levels.
TikTok has started to get recognized as a platform that is full of talent-less content creators who use someone else’s original work. People dislike it because almost everyone is posting lip-sync videos of themselves.
Because of this reason, many content creators on TikTok get trolled on other social media sites, and people mercilessly make memes about them.
The content creators on TikTok are hated so much that they are not considered on the same level as creators on YouTube or Twitch.
If you go on YouTube, you’ll find hundreds of reaction videos on the cringe content posted on TikTok. Yes, there is a section of people who make videos that can hurt your eyes.
But not everyone on the platform is like that! You can find cringe content anywhere! From Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter, you will find things that can be added to the cringe category.
Violence And Hate?
A short clip created by Faisal Siddiqui, brother of Amir Siddiqui, gained a lot of attention from the public. In that clip, he was splashing a glass of liquid on a woman’s face. Many felt like he was promoting an acid attack on someone just because that person rejected you.
He posted an explanation saying he is in no manner promoting violence in that video. That video raged many people, and the hate towards the app increased even more.
Not only him but many other TikTokers have made problematic videos in the past. Videos glorifying rape and abuse also started showing up on the app.
TikTok became a place for teenagers to participate in life-threatening trends just for the sake of views and followers.
The ‘TikTok Benadryl Challenge’ is one such example of that. In the trend, users were taking large amounts of Benadryl in an attempt to experience its hallucinogenic side effects.
Not only many teenagers lost their lives because of this, but safety-related questions also started popping up. Another trend where parents were seen throwing their children off camera also gained a lot of attention and hate.
YouTube Vs TikTok
During the starting months of the pandemic, millions of people started trending #bantiktok on Twitter because of one reason, Amir Siddiqui. When TikToker Amir Siddiqui released a video trolling the YouTubers, many got offended and made a video on him.
Carry Minati later roasted him in his video that got viral. The video got deleted because of using queerphobic language and classist insults. Before it got deleted, the video became the most-watched video by an Indian Youtuber.
Carry’s fans started trending #justiceforcarry on Twitter and demanded that TikTok should get banned.
Tiktok rating falls from 4.5 to 1.3 in just 4 days…..
Memers and youtubers : pic.twitter.com/onyoNr94KV
— UmderTamker (@jhampakjhum) May 20, 2020
What Made TikTok So Famous?
Several factors lead to the insane popularity of TikTok. The idea of making 15-second videos was unique to many countries like India, and that was one of the reasons many Indians started using TikTok.
But why do the very same people who loved to hate on TikTok are now all over it?
TikTok also allows users to download videos easily and upload them on other platforms. Many YouTube channels post compilations of TikTok videos of famous celebs and creators.
The high engagement rate attracted a whole lot of users. The videos that appear on the For You page are usually those that are interesting enough to hold the audience’s attention. This way, the platform allows small or lesser-known content creator’s videos to go viral.
It is complex to understand TikTok’s algorithm, but it is different from Instagram’s explore page.
Another thing that made people want to use the app was that they did not need to be at a fancy place or look the best to gain an audience. People can make TikTok on their terraces or in their rooms or on a roadside, literally, anywhere.
The mental state of many people is also disturbed because of the pandemic. Platforms like TikTok provided a place for people to express themselves.
It is also easier to shoot, edit and add effects on TikTok as compared to other apps. As many people do not have fancy cameras or editing software, the app provides everything with minimal effort.
Instagram has also come up with the same concept, but before all this, users had to upload videos using pro-editing tools. The same goes for Youtube, where few-second videos can’t be uploaded, and creators spend a lot of time creating content.
TikTok: Good Or Bad?
Love it or hate it, TikTok is not that bad as some people say it is! We all have loved the songs that got viral on the platform, and some of us have followed those silly and harmless trends too.
We all have spent hours scrolling through the For You page even though we came across some cringe content. What if Instagram Reels become the next TikTok? Who knows, we might have to ban Instagram also (I hope you get the hint).
Image Credits: Google Images, Fortune
Find The Blogger: @PrernaMagan
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