TikTok is ruining our generation


Elyse Perry, editor

About a year ago, I created an account on TikTok. I think I used my account for about a week before I deleted the app. In the week I had the app, I had used it for nearly twenty hours. On average, TikTok users are on the app for 87 minutes per day. I’m not surprised because it was the most addicting app I think I have ever had because it never ends; you can just keep scrolling forever, getting introduced to new sides of TikTok as you go. I had wasted about three hours a day of time I could’ve been spending with my family, friends, or schoolwork, and there was absolutely nothing gained from the time.

I don’t think that TikTok is the only thing that is ruining our generation, but I believe that it, and other social media, are big players. I think that the app is kind of brainwashing us in a way, harming our creativity and individuality. By scrolling through the app, it is easy to see what the current trends are because everyone is doing them. So many TikToks are just the same video with different characters and settings. We are becoming a generation of followers in which original creators are so often overlooked due to popular creators who don’t credit their work, and we are finding validation not in ourselves, but in our like count. 

Social media in general is causing many of us to have trouble with our self-worth and social skills, and I know that I am not any better. I rarely keep in touch with people anymore. I just like their posts on Instagram. When I hang out with people in person, I notice it too. Many times, when I hang out with my friends, a TikTok post will be brought up, so we spend time finding it and then we end up just scrolling through the app. It’s almost as if our generation has lost the ability to live in the moment, in our own lives, because the lure of apps such as TikTok have such a grasp on us. Social media presents a picture of life that appears perfect, so we lose ourselves in those videos. 

One of the most dangerous parts of us being so addicted and influenced by these apps are the trends that they bring with them. At the beginning of the school year, it was the devious lick challenge, where people would attempt to steal random items from public places. This trend being so big on TikTok seemed to make our generation believe that theft wasn’t illegal or morally wrong. Then, more recently, the trend was “shoot up your school day.” Local leaders and police officials deemed this TikTok trend enough of a threat to bring more police officers into a school as small as Delphi. Our generation was deemed a potentially dangerous group because of a TikTok trend; that is how much of a hold this app has on us. If that doesn’t scare you, I don’t know what will.

I know I can’t blame it all on one app, but I do feel like TikTok is a major player in the mess our generation is becoming. We are becoming followers; we follow and emulate influencers, allowing them to make our choices for us. We are learning to connect with people through likes and comments, not conversations. Social media is dangerous to both our social skills and our individuality, and I think it is capable of ruining our generation.