All one needs to know about TikTok | Sunday Observer

All one needs to know about TikTok

23 January, 2022

A Sri Lankan TikTok star was remanded for alleged sexual assault of an 11-year-old girl. The United Human Rights Organization said that the girl has been abused by the TikTok star, a known drug addict who rose to fame by creating videos on a popular social media network.

In another incident Police are investigating the killing of a 17-year-old boy purportedly over a TikTok video. The victim was attacked on January 3, 2022 at Madampitiya Lane Grandpass, Colombo, by a group of six boys, one of whom is alleged to have stabbed him to death.

What is TikTok? Needless to say, everybody knows about this app. But the app is deeper than what we think. However, to understand, we can simply define TikTok as a social media app that allows users to create, watch, and share 15- to 60-second videos shot on mobile phones. Today, TikTok has become one of the most entertaining social media app. At present it has 1 billion monthly active users. According to Sensor Tower estimates, TikTok amassed over 3 billion downloads and penetrated one-third of all social media users in the world in less than four years.

It took Facebook and Instagram almost a decade to get a user base that size. It seems TikTok really knew how to work the social media growth playbook. Today, the twin apps are available in 141 countries and work in 39 languages via the App Store and Google Play. TikTok is the first app outside of Facebook to reach the milestone of 3 billion downloads.

Short format

The name “TikTok” is meant to suggest the short format of the videos. It was launched in 2016 by the Chinese startup company ByteDance. It’s known there as Douyin. Before TikTok, people used to use an app called But in 2017, TikTok’s parent company, ByteDance, spent up to U.S. 1 billion dollars purchasing was a social media video platform that allowed users to create short lip-sync and comedy videos, initially released in August 2014.

It especially targeted the younger audience, and later, TikTok merged with in 2018 to create a larger video community, with existing accounts and data consolidated into one app, keeping the title TikTok. It was the end of the and the beginning of TikTok and Douyin.

According to Sensor Tower estimates, globally, the average time spent on TikTok per day is 52 minutes, with 90 percent of users accessing it on a daily basis. Its average session time of 10.85 minutes makes it the most engaging social media app available today.

The TikTok is like a knife, since it can be used for both good and bad.

This app is used by young people as an outlet to express themselves through singing, dancing, comedy, and lip-syncing and allows users to create videos and share them across a community.

The app can be categorised into various fields like entertainment, dance, pranks, fitness, sports, beauty, skin care, fashion, recipes, cooking, home renovations, life hacks, advice, pets, marketing, and so on.

Young community

Teenagers have got addicted to this app since they also enjoy competing in the different challenges which can be entered via the trending hashtags on the app. The app has a very dedicated, young community of users. For many of these users, gaining likes, followers, and getting their videos featured on the app are important priorities.

Creating and sharing their own content is now a big part of how teens spend their time online. Teenagers are moving away from being spectators online to becoming content creators. Through this app, teens can show their creativity and emotions, and they can create their own social content.

TikTok is truly an entertainment app. While many argue that social media platforms such as TikTok can be distracting for children, the fact that they’re entertaining can’t be denied. TikTok is full of comedy sketches, duets, and interesting dances, all of which are very amusing for children. Additionally, since TikTok is so prevalent among youngsters, they would feel left out if they aren’t using it. The fear of missing out (FOMO) syndrome is a real thing, especially among teenagers.

This app can be helpful for making good friends. Since TikTok is considered a social network, it offers a great opportunity to make new friends and form new connections. The thing is, the platform has millions of users worldwide, so it can create little communities. Some are shy about talking with friends and making new friends. Through this app, it removes the pressure of communicating directly face-to-face, making it a lot easier for some children to express their thoughts and feelings and make new friends.

The other thing is that TikTok can be a good creative outlet. There is some art to making TikTok videos. For example, users have to choose a suitable track, use suitable filters and effects, and do suitable editing. If they are going to perform, then the users should be creating suitable and attractive dancing moves.

When making comedy sketches, users have to come up with a funny script and think of ways to perform if the intent is to show it to viewers.

So it improves users’ self-expression and creativity.

TikTok offers earning potential. It is a widely-known fact that TikTok creators are among the highest-paid influencers in the world. Currently, there are dedicated TikTok scouting agencies, dedicated TikTok creator houses, and a whole set of sponsors waiting to display their products to their target audiences through this platform.

Art to making

For example, if you own an agency that promotes brands you can promote someone else’s brands by charging a fee. If you are the owner of a famous company or business, you have the chance to select one of the most popular TikTok stars and pay them to create a creative TikTok to promote your business or company. There is always a chance to earn money through TikTok.

TikTok is also a marketing tool. We have seen many marketing tools, and Tiktok can also be introduced as a marketing tool. The app can be used for promotions. People who are self-employed or who are running their own businesses can use TikTok as a marketing tool. It is cheap and anyone can use this app easily to promote their goods.

Owners who do not have a lot of money to spend on advertising their business in any type of media can easily take advantage of this.

They just need a smartphone and a creative mind.

There is no expense to cameramen, locations, and so son. For example, if you own a dress shop, you can wear your dresses and make a creative TikTok to share with your followers or even on other social media platforms such as Facebook and Instagram.

Releasing a song

And today, most artistes use this app to promote their new songs, films, teledramas, and new melodies. For example, before releasing a song, they give a small part of the lyrics to the Tiktok stars that make it viral among users and followers too.

So, before releasing the song, the owners can make their new songs well-known without putting in much effort. By doing these things, people are aware of the newest things and are already getting ready to embrace the song.

The TikTok app is something that can be used to obtain information. The app provides not only entertainment but also numerous facts about a variety of topics. Users can learn about beautiful places to visit, beautiful countries, rare places, and rare foods and so on.

We sometimes need to know how to make foods, to clean the house, and other small tips in our daily lives. We could learn about newly released films, new songs, and the latest things that are going to happen.

The TikTok is something that makes new trends among people, like single persons and single mothers. People who are living alone create videos through this app to avoid their loneliness.

Many learning opportunities can be obtained through this app.

The facts about both mental and physical health can be obtained by using these app. Legal facts and so many other things could be obtained through this app. So it’s not only provides entertainment but knowledge as well. And the main reason for using TikTok is, that one could also promote their classes, businesses, or whatever they are and whatever they are involved in by using this app.

Influencer marketing

But the best thing about TikTok is its influencer marketing. Harshaka Hettiarachchi, Senior Lecturer at the Department of Commerce and Financial Management at the University of Kelaniya, shared his ideas with the Sunday Observer about the impact of marketing on the TikTok app.

“Tiktok is used all over the world as a marketing tool. It is the most used social media platform in a short period of time. Compared to other media platforms, this one excels in uniqueness. TikTok is not comparable with other social media like Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube. The majority think that YouTube and TikTok have similarities, but that is not correct. TikTok is something really unique, and people have got attached to this app owing to its uniqueness.

Even in India, TikTok had to be banned since it had become a big addiction. People spend more time in the app, and they become addicted to the app’s videos. People frequently consider going to the app and watching the videos on it. As such, more countries in the world including Sri Lanka have benefited from this app.

TikTok mainly use celebrities and micro-celebrities to promote brands. Celebrities, such as cricketers, actors, and models, are used to promote brands with their own profiles or those of companies they own.

Micro celebrities less famous, but they have some following on social media and they are famous for creating creative and unique content by themselves.

Brand promotion through TikTok in Sri Lanka is still in its infancy. But in other countries, this is mostly used. But the celebrities don’t directly say, “This is the brand I’m using. You can buy it.” Celebrities show the brand through the video, and they highlight the brand and indirectly pass a hint to the audience. They mainly focus on the brand and created a video with unique content. By merging both the brand and the content, they motivate the audience to purchase it. So TikTok cannot be compared with TV commercials.

It is different from that. Within seconds, the brand is implanted in people’s minds. The TikTok app can be used as an e-commerce platform today. In many countries, people have the chance to buy it through the app. For example, if they are watching a Tiktok video and decide to purchase the item featured in the video, they can go directly to the website via the link provided in the video and purchase the item.

Many countries can upload advertisements through TikTok, but Sri Lankans still have no such option as yet.

The most important thing in the app is the creativity of the influencers. It is through an influencer’s creativity that the brand goes to the people. It is not a typical advertisement, it comes with creativity.

The TikTok has a different culture where the bulk of the users watch videos. Then we should be able to promote the brand among the audience within a small video clip in a few seconds. The young are eager to buy new phones, accessories and the latest things. So, targeting that audience, companies do the TikTok videos by using celebrities such as cricketers and so on. So TikTok has a different concept than TV commercials and it depends on the influencer. The addiction to TikTok is psychologically bad, but brand promoting is great.

Typical advertisement

Even though the platform is aimed at teens and children, there are elders as well. So when these mature individuals send explicit messages and images to children, it becomes problematic. There have been numerous instances where parents have had to report predatory behaviour to the police. So parents have to be aware of these disgusting things. This app can harm your privacy. Sometimes when creating videos, creators show off their homes, their locations, their homes’ interiors, their properties and more.

The more users a platform has, the greater the chances of receiving negative comments.

Negative comments can severely impact one’s self-esteem and confidence, and even harm someone’s life too. So more negative comments lead to more devastating impacts on children, and it has negative effects on one’s confidence. It can deeply hurt one’s mental health. There have been instances where children have turned to self-harm or faced other issues such as anorexia and bulimia owing to social media. So the problem is that Sri Lankans still does not know how to use this app correctly. Sri Lanka is not alone, but many other countries are unable to understand this app. Many countries in the world use TikTok wisely and with the right understanding”.