The Twitterification of TikTok [Content Made Simple]
Issue #276: Streamer stalkers, some McLuhan reflections, and more.
TOP OF THE WEEK
The Twitterification of TikTok
A telltale sign that a TikTok video has been Twittered is when the creator has pinned a statement to address whatever is happening below in the comments. It’s become a private game for me to reckon the gulf between the actual content of the video and what the creator feels forced to address. The widest one yet was an animal video with the pinned comment “transphobia will NOT be tolerated in the comments.” Good, but what on earth had to go down for us to get there?
I have noticed this phenomenon! Such an interesting little piece of social media evolution chaff.
THE TRIVIA QUESTION
Which U.S. state is the only state without a mandatory seatbelt law for adults?
Answer linked at the bottom.
HITTING THE LINKS
Link #1: I Didn’t Want It to Be True, but the Medium Really Is the Message
Probably the best thing I’ve read about social media this year.
Over the past decade, the narrative has turned against Silicon Valley. Puff pieces have become hit jobs, and the visionaries inventing our future have been recast as the Machiavellians undermining our present. My frustration with these narratives, both then and now, is that they focus on people and companies, not technologies. I suspect that is because American culture remains deeply uncomfortable with technological critique.
Link #2: Meta’s AI Chatbot Repeats Election and Anti-Semitic Conspiracies
Move fast and break things, I guess.
In a chat with a Wall Street Journal reporter, the bot claimed that Trump was still president and “always will be.”
The chatbot also said it was “not implausible” that Jewish people controlled the economy, saying they’re “overrepresented among America’s super rich.”
The Anti-Defamation League says that assertions that Jewish people control the global financial system are part of an anti-Semitic conspiracy theory.
Link #3: How Streaming Stars Pay the Price of Online Fame
I don’t know how I feel about this, honestly. It’s probably worth me writing about at some point. An interesting read.
But on Twitch, the relationship with a celebrity is not entirely unreciprocated, said Rachel Kowert, a psychologist and research director at Take This, a mental health nonprofit for the gaming community. Instead, Dr. Kowert said, it’s a one-and-a-half-sided parasocial relationship, because fans typing in the chat box occasionally get a response from the streamer.
To welcome a new subscriber, for instance, Ms. Siragusa sometimes writes the viewer’s handle on her leg or a pool toy.
THE FUNNY PART
You can subscribe to The Funnies here. (It is a weekly email of funny internet content, and it will always be free.)