Entertainment & Media

The Influence of TikTok

By Augustine Magapan

Volume 3 Issue 1

November 7, 2022

The Influence of TikTok

Image provided by Google

 In September 2016, ByteDance, a Chinese technology company, launched an app called TikTok. The well-favored app was initially the famous Musical.ly app until ByteDance bought it and converted it into the social media known today. As time progressed throughout the years, more people used the app every day. Today, in over 150 countries, TikTok has over one billion users. An average user would open the application about 8 times per day; consequently, it is shown that TikTok has a strong influence on people. Why is that?  

Our brains have a mechanism of releasing dopamine, a type of neurotransmitter that plays a part in how we feel pleasure. Our phone activity would cause the release of dopamine in our brains which make us feel motivated and happy. When your brain starts to understand this release of dopamine based on what you are doing on your phone, your brain will have the urge to crawl back to the phone for more releases of dopamine. This causes phone addictions for most people because of the happiness they get from going on their phones. TikTok is one of the reasons people are addicted to their phones. An average user would open the application about 8 times per day creating an addiction to a person. This is due to the TikTok videos being short and sweet which creates a diversified “for you page” purposely to keep a user’s attention going from one to another. The videos would be relevant to the dopamine excretion that the brain would release since the TikToks are filtered to a person’s interest making the phone user feel good and want more of it.  

That is just one aspect of TikTok. People are influenced by TikTok so easily that their habits change. Another aspect of TikTok that influences a person is their music taste. Music is used in many ways. It mainly promotes our well-being since we usually use it to tranquilize ourselves and spurt out our emotions freely. It also helps identify and understand who we are and how to impact society. Initially, people would use Musical.ly to express themselves in videos with music they enjoy before TikTok came on. Multiple trends would arise from certain songs. In TikTok, people now express themselves even further with music. People dance to it. Some express certain parts of the song and identify why it is impactful. Music in TikTok can create a whole new playlist because of the new “for you page” algorithm. TikTok knows what music you would like as well, not just the videos that you are interested in. Usually, people tend to look at which “sounds” or music is trending at the moment and start to hop on board with the bandwagon by doing whatever dance or just recording themselves with the song. I enjoyed certain songs I found on my feed and added them to a playlist on Spotify because they were enjoyable and helped me express my emotions better.  

Finally, even though it is important to realize how many people in this world have an addiction and strong influence on themselves by being on social media, it can also improve someone’s health. Not all the influence and content on TikTok are useless or unhealthy amounts of entertainment. People can learn new things on TikTok that can be implemented in a person’s normal routine, or perhaps a new diet. Cooking and exercising and also advice for family, school, and relationships are posted as well. Another portion of the content can come from schools or businesses trying to promote their products as well which can flourish the economic state of the online world as well. 

Overall, TikTok has transformed the metaverse immensely and people from all over the world are using it daily for an excessive amount of time. In the end, however, people can continue to reach out and stay connected with family and friends while being overall healthy by making TikToks or sending them.