It´s the TikTok for Me

TikTok is one of the most popular social media platforms out right now with roughly one billion people having downloaded the app. According to CNBC, 63% of Americans aged 12-17, use the app on a weekly basis, even surpassing Instagram, with only 57% using it in that same time frame. Considering this information, it may not come as a surprise that teenagers use this app so frequently to the point it might be starting to become implemented in their actual personalities and identities. 

AAVE has often been misidentified as¨TikTok¨ language due to how frequently it appears on the app. Since teens are seeing phrases and words such as ¨period¨ and ¨it´s the ____for me¨, very often on the app, it makes sense why it appears in their daily vocabulary. However, some people simply find these sayings annoying due to how much it is repeated. Sophomore, Nia Ngwanah thinks that these sayings are becoming dated. 

¨It’s so repetitive. I can understand if you say stuff like that a few times, but if that’s what you´re saying constantly, I feel like you spend all your time on TikTok and have no sense of originality. Literally no one is original these days,¨ said Ngwanah. 

Not only might TikTok be affecting the vocabulary of teens, it might be affecting their humor as well. Many people make comedic videos on the platform in hopes of going viral. This has led to inside jokes within the app such as ¨the game¨ as well as other comedy-based content. This has caused a majority of users to change what they consider funny. Senior, Henna Nyguen believes that TikTok has changed her personality by altering her sense of humor.

“My humor has faltered because I laugh at everything on TikTok. I say TikTok quotes all the time. I don’t even know how to explain it. It just comes to my head automatically without me thinking,¨ said Nyguen. 

It also appears that the impact of TikTok on teens may be showing up physically, not just mentally.  One of the main ways people may express themselves is through clothing and fashion. On an app like TikTok which helps many people garner creative content, fashion is one of the most popular topics on the app, with the #Fashion tag having 181.5 billion views. Due to this, many teens run to the app to help them with their personal style. Junior, Emelie Sarpong, thinks that TikTok has helped her find the style that suits her.

“TikTok has definitely changed my style. Now I know what I like and what I don´t like and it helps me figure out what I want to wear,” said Sarpong.

Some teachers have begun to notice the impact TikTok has had on students. Whether it disrupts class or is the main topic of discussion, the app has found its way inside many classrooms. Teacher, Leigh Anne Smith has had instances where students neglected their work to participate in TikTok trends. 

“I had a group of girls who tried to get out in the middle of class last year to film a TikTok and really could not understand why I was upset by that,¨ explained Smith. The action these girls performed could be defined as chronically online, which Smith described as ¨somebody who’s online all the time, constantly scrolling through some type of social media.”

This time last year, a TikTok trend was going around called ¨devious licks¨, where students would steal items from the bathrooms such as toilet paper and soap and then proceed to film their vandalism to post on TikTok. It got to the point where several of the bathrooms were locked and many students were forced to go to completely different floors to find available bathrooms to use. Teacher, Shameeka Smith, thinks that the trend was not the smartest choice students could have made. 

“People get so caught up in trying to go viral, that they begin to lose sense of real life consequences,” said Smith.

According to, ¨teens’ developing brains are extremely vulnerable to so much time online.” One could argue that TikTok is a fine example of this. TikTok may have the reach it does due to the variety and diversity of the app. There are different sides of the platform such as ¨booktok¨ and ¨filmtok¨ that have accumulated billions and billions of views. Senior, Abbie Agyare believes that its appeal comes from its relate-ability. 

“It’s influential and everyone can relate to it. I know at least 90% of the people in this lunch room have it because there’s something there for everyone, no matter their interests,” stated Agyare. 

When consuming so much of the same media on a daily basis, consumers may display the behaviors they are exposed to. This might be evident in teens in regards to TikTok, an app whose appeal could continue to reach the masses. Sophomore, Nia Ngwanah believes the phenomenon can contribute its success to its algorithm.

“There’s a lot of different categories and types of people on TikTok. You can find whoever and your “for you” page is specific towards you. If you like something, you’re gonna see more videos that are similar to that thing,¨ said Ngwanah.