TV is dead, and social media killed it. Or at least it helped dig the grave.
TikTok, the wildly successful video app owned by Chinese company ByteDance, is upping their game. In an attempt to stand alongside content giants Twitch and OnlyFans, they’ve introduced a paid portion of the platform.
If you’re unfamiliar, Twitch and OnlyFans host creators for specialized content – Twitch is primarily for gamers, and OnlyFans allows subscribers to privately follow their favorite…ahem…adult performers.
TikTok’s hope is that it will get more eyeballs on screens if they incentivize the growing community to become even more active. After all, who doesn’t want to reach out and touch their favorite creators?
This announcement comes at a time where TikTok is facing some significant scrutiny. From viral challenges causing users to literally run in front of trucks to potential security risks involving sensitive user data being funneled directly to China, the app has had a rocky road on its climb to the top.
They’ve also recently announced that they’ll be implementing a feature that’s aimed at reducing screen time by nudging users who have been scrolling nonstop for hours. By doing so, they’re attempting to help their audience be more mindful of how they spend their time on social media.
Whether or not either of these features will be a success is anyone’s guess. But it highlights the inherent issues that some young people are faced with when confronted with new tech with unknown repercussions. Studies have been done that link addicted Tok-ers with increased anxiety, depression, and reduced working memory.
The reality is we don’t know what these apps are doing to mental and social health on a wider scale. And we likely won’t for many years. But we can be mindful and watch the evolution of the platforms, and in turn, our kids that are using them.