BYU students find positives and negatives to TikTok

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TikTok has quickly become one of the most popular apps available today.

This app allows users to make short 15- to 60-second videos. Users can add sound, text, filters and music to their videos. The “For You” page is the main place where users watch videos catered to their likes and interests based on the TikTok algorithm.

TikTok has over 800 million active users around the world, and some BYU students have downloaded the app themselves.

BYU student Kyle Griffitts downloaded TikTok at the end of 2019, and since then he has gained over 32,700 followers.

“My first viral video was a video of me singing a song from High School Musical with one of my friends. She was singing on one side of the door and I was on the other side, and I didn’t realize that she went down the stairs and I was singing alone,” Griffitts said.

Griffitts’ first viral video reached over 700,000 views, and since then he has had more videos go viral.

As Griffitts has spent more time on TikTok, he has recognized that there are both positives and negatives to the app.

One of the negatives of TikTok, according to Griffitts, is that just like any other form of social media, people can hide behind their screen and send hate to users.

In addition, Griffitts said another negative is that he tends to waste time on the app. The “For You” page never runs out of videos, so it can be easy for individuals to binge-watch TikToks.

Another TikTok user and BYU student Jason Hulet said users don’t have control over what they see. “One thing that is difficult about TikTok is that you can’t always guarantee that it will be wholesome content. I can’t censor what is on my ForYouPage, so sometimes I see content that is not always uplifting.”

With all of the negatives regarding the app, students have also found there to be positive aspects as well.

BYU sophomore Summer Woods has been using TikTok since summer 2019, and she has found TikTok to be a positive experience.

“What I love about TikTok is that it is sort of a creative outlet. I am able to try new dance trends, new cooking ideas, and make relatable content. I have learned so many new skills because of TikTok,” Woods said.

Griffitts also said one of the positives of TikTok is that it is fun to do when hanging out with friends. “For some reason, it is a lot of fun to make TikToks with friends, and it brings everyone together.”

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