Instagram, by contrast, just feels so bland now.
My sneaking suspicion is product management designed a product that is literally perfect for a recommendation engine.
Instagram and Facebook get bland real quick. Youtube/Netflix videos are often too long to be really addictive - "just one more" isn't as persuasive if "one more" takes 10 min+. With shorter skits like Key & Peele on Youtube you do get a stronger sense of that addictiveness. Twitter is mostly text and much less expressive, and even influencers treat it mostly as a communication/announcement platform, not a content platform.
Vine was hugely popular when it was shut down by Twitter, and I think it'll go down in history as one of the largest corporate mistakes every made. They were so close on the format - they just needed to allow slightly longer videos (which they did with Twitter message lengths around they same time they shut down Vine!!!).
I'm sure Bytedance's secret recommendation sauce is good, but I think much of their success is simply thanks to them being the first competent executor of the next major social media content format.
Vine's top creators "unionized" and started demanding to be paid a cut. Vine had to be destroyed to defend the principle of not paying social media contributors.
Worth the full watch on video media money. But tldw; TikTok splits a pot of money over the views each video gets. The pot doesn't grow with the revenue they make or total views, so it's pretty exploitative.
Also their recommendations aren’t as good but that could just be a side effect of the above.
If you like one picture of a dog on Instagram it'll just show you more dogs and you get bored. Watch a few YouTube videos about one topic and the algorithm gets fixated on it.
YouTube is so bad now that if you use it to listen to music the autoplay gets into an infinite loop of songs that sound near identical, it's torture if you don't already know what you want to see/hear.
In short the usual algorithms are tailored to find similar content only, rather than finding novel content several degrees of separation away from what the user has expressed interest in.
First time I heard about it. If it's hidden behind an undiscoverable gesture/tap, it's not accessible.
It’s also possible any recommendation system can only stay pure for a few years until everyone from both sides is gaming them so badly for money it just cannot work anymore.
If that’s what YouTube wants to be now, that’s fine. My question is now where do I go to find what YouTube used to be (TikTok, maybe)? It’s ironic too, because it’s like they don’t realize that as a millennial I was drawn to YouTube because it _wasn’t_ TV.
Or, you know, your platform makes me watch ten minutes to find something that would take 30 seconds otherwise, so fuck your platform.
with youtube i usually open a video in a incognito tab anytime im watching something random, otherwise it takes weeks of clicking "not interested" just to get rid of some recommendations. sad times
So after I watch that instrumental music video, there will be a mass recommendation for other instrumental music. And that's nice, because I apparently was in a mood for that. And the next day, I open my browser again and they are all gone! I can dive into the music for the mood of that moment right away.
I really miss the option to tell it that I just really don’t want to see sports.
Now, maybe I'll type in a song title, listen to the song, and the next video is a live performance of the same song... Followed by a lyric video of the same song.
Somehow YouTube is seeing more engagement by showing more of the same, and TikTok is seeing even more engagement from showing fresh content.
Maybe the risk of an upward trend in outcomes, that blurs the fact that you could see even better trends by done things differently.
Most videos you see on tiktok are probably not people you are following, while most on Instagram probably are
They test content on a small circle of users, if metrics are good they keep expanding
TikTok, on the other hand, is a giant waste of my time. I have yet to find a single video I've liked from that platform; very little useful information there.
Holy crap literally this happened to me few days ago
The thing is, the engine creates the content. Not quite as efficiently as a human producer saying "I want a 30 second video about X", but through the feedback loop of what gets promoted.
Twitter is run by libertarians who prioritise free speech, and therefore what Twitter produces is more and more intense political argument. Once the Tahrir square revolution and the color revolutions happened, that's what the place is locked into.
Instagram created the "influencer": young hyper conventionally attractive women photographed in beautiful locations, advertising products like energy drinks on their own account rather than a traditional modelling agency structure.
Youtube created the "let's play" and the "thirty to 120 minute political rabbithole" and the "shocked face thumbnail" genres.
Tiktok's secret weapon - and I'm not familiar with how it works in detail, but the effects are very clear - is a video editing tool, a content creation system, that is accessible for ordinary people. The evidence of this is that much of the "reels" content on Instagram's Tiktok clone has Tiktok watermarks on it.
Oh wow, I wasn't expecting such a big laugh this early in the morning... thank you!
Twitter, Youtube, Instagram, Facebook all about creators and social "connections" or follows to these. So you get the good with all the ugly and horrible. Want insights, art or jokes. Get the horrible political opinions and signalling too... And then see all the fights.
I think there is nothing wrong with saying 'I am going to spend X time on social media and get entertainment out of it'. It is very different when you go to do one specific thing, and spend the next 2 hours in a complete daze in rabbit holes.
Astonishingly good attention and interest manipulation. Terrifyingly good, in fact. I don't moralize about getting lost in trash entertainment, but there's a significant swath of the population for which this format combined with these design patterns is a big problem.
So... what's the thing here with TikTok? I mean it cannot just be that it's a personally-tailored time suck. What's missing? Is it pro-unionization rabbit holes?
I'm going to go ahead and guess "pro-unionization rabbit holes." If I'm wrong then the evidence will be me following the link someone gives me of a 2-hour TikTok unionization rabbit hole. I can't lose, internet!
OP's critique seems to be that TikTok caused engagement with their preferred content for a longer duration than desired. That's not an interesting distinction from what happened back in the day with people going down Wikipedia rabbit holes. "Digital crack" is hyperbole if all it means is spending longer on the topics one already likes.
My question: is the TikTok algo consistently steering users toward/away from categories of content they would have otherwise had an interest in consuming? E.g., are there pro-unionization users who accidentally spend 2 hours watching pro-unionization TikToks? Or is the recommendation engine steering those users to 2 hours of some less contentious category?
I’ve seen so many people complain that “tiktok keeps showing them young girls dancing” lol.
Some of it is actually from TikTok.
So I guess you have to be super disciplined to get a nice TikTok feed? Or just try it long enough? Or it only works for women, because they may click less on young dancing girls?
Same with youtube - I want to be able to occasionally watch something without it assuming I want that ALL the time, to exclusion of everything else. Yes, I checked out a video on how to change the filter on my laundry machine; yes I needed to fix my snow blower. These things are not my life now! <slap my face emoji>
Basically, I'm stunned how unsophisticated and unhelpful these algorithms are to me as a consumer, though I suppose they are effective to company who wants to drive "Engagement" without caring any further than that.
P.S. And now that I have kids, oh boy are these systems ever confused :D. If I stop to show my kid something on my phone, that's all I'll see for next 3 weeks.
I uninstalled it for two days, so I really don't have a guilty conscience of secretly liking young girls or whatever. It was ultimately just annoying.
This might not be a problem, of course, but in other situations might be something you don’t want to make public?
So in a way, saying that TikTok is outrageous is a bit hypocritical: it shows what you seem to like, and surely you calling it outrageous can only be a posture.
"This other guy also liked the insert_young_male_interest that you like, and now he uses tiktok every day to jerk off to teen girls with bad parents, why don't you do that too?" is literally how algorithms designed to maximize viewing time work.
It doesn't just show you things you have shown interest in. It shows you content that might cause you to use thr app more than you already do, based on what other users have done. Which is why some algorithm holes are deeper and easier to fall into.
Most of us get exactly zero Asian girls on our TikTok. You just basically told everyone that TikTok detected that you probably have a (maybe subconscious) attraction to Asian girls.
It seems really off to accuse random people on the internet to be attracted to kids.
What I was saying is that I was shown young women, but it still annoyed me.
As for attraction - that is what TikTok's algorithm started out with, and I liked some of them, because why not? As I said, they are cute and they put in the effort to do some funny stunts or whatever. I didn't dislike them, so why not press "like"? Doesn't mean I want to see those girls all the time. Also yeah, I am a heterosexual male, so young women are attractive to me.
I probably would have liked a lot of cat videos, too, if TikTok had shown them to me. Doesn't mean I want to see cat videos all the time, either, and also not that I am sexually attracted to cats.
I only tried TikTok for maybe two days, so I really think it is a failure of the algorithm, not a reveal of my subconsciousness.
Since everybody was raving about the TikTok algorithm, which is what made me try it out in the first place, I assumed that I wouldn't have to be super careful in "training" the algorithm. Apparently I assumed wrong.
I kind of get the feeling that we are passing or have passed some threshold where many, possibly most people can no longer identify Actual Authenticity due to social media overexposure, and I for one find this distressing.
Wow I never thought of this applied to algorithms and AI. Very profound to think about in this context, of users selecting the best videos with their clicks and evolving the naturally selected videos to out compete the other videos, in the same vein as survival of the fittest.
This is kinda baffling to me. I got into Instagram because photography is a hobby of mine and curiosity got the best of me. I follow a few photographers ("actual people", as opposed to aggregators) who only post "normal" photography. Sure, they're "pretty pictures", but I'd say it's not really the kind the general population would think of when mentioning Instagram.
Yet, whenever I go on the "explore" tab, I'm inundated with girls in skin-tight clothes or guys showing off their latest sports cars. The "feed" (home button) does seem to have relevant content, although it's quite repetitive outside the people I follow. And for some reason, I keep getting ads for tiny homes, which aren't even a thing in France, where I live.
Also, only being able to use it on a small-screen phone got old fast. And I'm not interested in hauling around a big-ass phone, I already have a laptop.
On to the next 'hit' then.
The addictiveness of the drug 'Instagram™' has now worn off and has no effect on many long time 'users' of the drug since first introduced in the 2010s. A new 'digital crack cocaine' with a new innovative algorithmic black-box formula has been on the streets called 'TikTok™' amassing over 1B 'users' designed to glue you to your screen as much as possible.
There will be a time where this drug will wear off for another generation and they will find the next addictive hit to scramble and hype over just like they did with Facebook™, and Instagram™.
The only way to really win is to not play the game and to not become a regular 'user', which is what they call people addicted to a particular drug. Interesting that nothing there has changed since the CEOs, VPs, VCs and product managers know that their products are compared to addictive drugs.
Rinse and repeat I guess. But we'll see in a decades time on what the next 'hit' will be.
But u can’t take advantage of those opportunities unless u become an user first and study what works
Except meanwhile you can't make normal contact with people because everybody is looking at their phone.
Someone who’s watched a bunch of shows is called a binge watcher.
No matter what they’re called, reading specifically requires more active thinking than watching stuff. I wouldn’t say theyre the same.
It is just that simple content tend to choose easy to digest mediums, there is not much demand for low effort literature today since people just watch movies instead.
Thats why i mentioned reading books also requires more “active” part of the brain rather than passively watching.
My main point really was that reading requires a more active effort than watching which is passive.
Tiktok definitely does have its own aesthetic and style, with different people leaning into (or out of) it to varying degrees.
I will say - I've never seen a social network that's as queer as my tiktok experience is. It's great. I wish I had this when I was younger.
I've never used TikTok before, so apologies for the ignorance, but here's a question nevertheless: one of the really nice thing about YouTube is the sort of "long term archival of knowledge" aspect of it.
Meaning: unless Google decides to purge content for reason X or Y, it is (or seems to) be there for ever.
What about TikTok content? Is it here to stay or is it kind of ephemeral?
Also: at the risk of sounding like an old fart, I really dislike using a phone for consuming content (tiny screen, unwieldy interface, no control on the platform, the list is very long) ... is there a non-mobile way to access it? For content that teaches you about stuff, is there a way to bookmark it and refer to it later?
There's a website as well as the app.
You can look through all the videos you've favorited, but it could be hard to find a specific one. If you want to be sure you can quickly find something, you can share it or copy and paste the link. You can also follow its creator.
However, you have more of a point if you look at typical likely-voters instead of all voting-age people.
Could this just be a honeymoon phase before the SEO experts arrive in force to help make content go viral while ByteDance starts testing different monetization strategies by messing with the feed?
I hear some commonality here with how people describe reddit: "Sure, by default it is a cesspool but once you dedicate energy to seeking out the better content, it really is there, hiding deep in the weeds."
Clearly, I'm paraphrasing with added hyperbole to make a point, but I don't find the argument compelling that social media really can add value to our lives as long as we ignore the most visible and popular content within it.
Sure some what you see is supported by "algorithms"; but what you sense ("playful, authentic, and raw" ) is the result of a deliberate editorial policy done by a group of actual humans.
Never got into instagram/tiktok and its less appealing every time I hear about it or see too small kids addicted to it. I am rather too busy living real life interacting with real people - that isn't some smug snobbishness, just that online interaction in such a form simply doesn't cut it for me, too bland, too passive, too shallow and life painfully too short for such mistakes.
It rejects Instagram’s focus on aesthetics and instead appeals to playfulness and authenticity.
It's nice to see that tiktok doesn't devolve into a soul sucking fake life stream.
IG was "genuine" when people were fleeing there in droves to escape the parents and grandparents that had turned FB into a PG-rated blandscape of baby and family pics.
At the time, IG was this new thing that seemed to focus on artistic self-expression. This was when IG filters just recoloured your photos, and didn't smooth out wrinkles or add dog ears and tongues.
At some point people realized that you could take photos with product placement, and it was all downhill from there.
It'll happen to TikTok as well.
It was fun to observe that during the myspace days but it's getting annoying.
It's as if people who have been on the internet since those days can easily see what's coming.
Also, TikTok already existed. It was called Vine.
Wait for them to start doing TV shows with some non-Chinese focus.
The CCP really, really likes video clips of happy people doing cheerful things, and there's absolutely nothing wrong with enjoying that content, but really great films and TV shows challenge us, give us fresh new perspectives, and make us see the world a little bit differently. China may be able to compete with some of the more guilty-pleasure sorts of TV content, but it's hard for me to imagine many high quality films that resonate with the human spirit coming out of China any time soon.
I'd love if they proved me wrong.
Same here. And then I read all the other comments on this post by people who don't get it, don't think it's funny, isn't getting "good" content, and I start to wonder if I'm lucky?
Except, I haven't really liked or disliked anything on the app. I'm just scrolling, flipping away videos that I don't like, staying on videos I do. Sure, there's a lot of crap, but there are just so many diamonds on there! I can easily laugh my ass off every night, because the format is just perfect for a bunch of quick visual gags.
The duet feature and the re-use song feature enable so much absolute hilarity, because of the repetition humour.
Which is why I watched a TikTok of someone putting a 3D-printed magic wand on top of a sea urchin, set to the sound of someone saying "Avadakadavra" in a really high-pitched voice, and I just fucking lost it. It's brilliant! Brilliant!
15 minutes into it I felt it starting to suck time out of my life because the algorithm is repsecting my wishes and (unlike others) seems to recognize that people have more than one interest and that not interested means not interested.
I just removed it again for that very reason.
Is everyone here just determined to make themselves miserable?
Instagram and HN are really the only social media I regularly use. Instagram because I follow my friends and I enjoy seeing what’s going on in their world and HN because I usually learn something reading it.
"I'm having fun on <popular social media>!"
Like a young child then
I'm not embodying any fake persona, just trying to find what I would find interesting. I just don't get addicting content. I even try searching so that TikTok would get explicit keywords from me.
I subscribe to a bunch of email newsletters and RSS feeds, check Reddit and Twitter daily, and check HackerNews morning and night, and I have no problem finding interesting content every time I open these things (Twitter being least interesting to me out of this list).
I like software engineering, business, product management, marketing, and technology industry generally. I don't believe I am so far from regular consumers: I check out mainstream videos on YouTube like MKBHD and even subscribe to his podcast (This is to show I find content for "mainstream consumers" interesting, though I work in tech and know more about tech things than MKBHD's target audience).
Can someone help? Why is the whole world praising TikTok while I am failing repeatedly?
I think we have the same "problem": "content" doesn't engage us, "discussion" does. It's not so much about the exact topic as much as the ability to see other perspectives. All these modern social media platforms are awful for discussion and actively downplay it, despite all the popular ones having some form of commenting features. The closest modern analog would be discord, but discussion is almost as ephemeral as Snapchat once you get even a tiny bit active. small group servers kind of capture the feel, but still isn't meant for longform replies like this one,
Feel free to mention if I missed the mark by a country mile. But I've been thinking about this for a while on why I can browse reddit for hours but can't stand instagram for more than a few minutes (aside from my resistance to give Facebook another account to mine data from). reddit has more discussion than I could ever read (perhaps even too much). Youtube comments are pretty low quality (in both formatting and content) but does the bare minimum needed to post stuff longer than a tweet.
(That said, I've been getting way more into silly cat videos than I ever wanted to, so who knows?)
And it's not an attention span thing — I read books. It's about the density of information and the speed with which I can traverse it. I can read as fast as I think, but even 2x speed videos don't get there. So without an additional activity to fill my whole attention space (is there a term for this? ADHD people might have one?) I get bored.
Thanks for helping me see this!
I thought you might be referring to “other people thoughts” outside your bubble? Which could hint to why you don’t like Instagram (they try to keep you in one thought bubble) compared to HN/Reddit.
PS: I’m actually interested in both, content and discussion. Which is bad because you get addicted to all kind of platforms!
yes, which is partially why I used quotes. I don't know a precise term for what I'm describing. "content" in this context tends to focus more on the creator while "discussion" tends to focus more on the topic. They certainly aren't mutually exclusive. I feel an example of the difference is two scenario with a youtube video.
- someone with many subscribers publishing a youtube video on their channel and the resulting comments (people who likely have some personal investment in the creator) skewing towards discussion of the creator's thoughts and ability
- that same video being posted on reddit, with a degree of separation meaning that the discussion usually skews towards the topic, with little mention of the creator specifically.
The both have some mixing of discussion and content, but they have a different flavor to them. modern social media skews even further towards focusing on the creator, even in resulting discussion. Which is fine but perhaps not satifying to a "discussion focused" user who simply wants to figure out the recipe required or the work needed to perform a feat and hoping to hear multiple other voices of people who have tried/made similar things.
>I thought you might be referring to “other people thoughts” outside your bubble? Which could hint to why you don’t like Instagram
well that part varies immensely. Some people do want to try and consider multiple viewpoints, some merely want the "truth" and will inevitably muck through a lot of noise to try and find that. And others still do just want to hear their own viewpoints echoed.
It's a spectrum and I can't pretend that I fit neatly into any of the kinds of categories above. Depends on my mood and the topic. Some topics I have no stakes nor thoughts in and I just wanna see what the conversation is, while others I am pretty set in and I do just inevitably think to myself "does anyone actually know what they are talking about?"
But I think that's on a separate axis on the reason other social media don't engage me. It's not like I want a bunch of people downplaying or contradicting the creator to create "discussion". That's a lose-lose for everyone. But the nature of Instagram means it won't be easy to say, look at a cosplaying longboarder and
- see if other people also cosplay longboard
- read other people's experiences on their own attempts at cosplay longboarding
- get more context on if cosplaying longboarding is some rising trend sweeping a nation
That sorts of info is what personally sends me down the rabbit hole that somehow ends with me knowing way too much trivia on a topic I never even thought of hours later. Otherwise, it's more of a matter of "neat, that's really creative and I never woulda thought of that" and then move on with my day.
- A girl coder who showed people how she operated her light airplane, flying between different little Midwest cities where she lived.
- A free diver (living in Hawaii?) who could stay underwater for several minutes at a time (and film fun chill videos while at it).
- Good relationship advice from progressive-thinking folks who weren't out to make a political point, or shame one party or another.
- Nifty yoga tricks from someone in SoCal.
- Longboarding cosplayers from Asia (yes, they would dress up... and longboard...).
It was also the first social media platform where I saw plenty of positive representation of folks from different backgrounds – including the country my parents came from. Far, far cry from what I read in the US media, by contrast. Compared to the awful divisive stuff I saw on FB, I thought to myself, it's really odd that the US tried to shut this down. Call it addictive, but it didn't leave me feeling soul-damaged.
I've never seen any interesting tech content, or insightful political content (beyond hot takes on current news), or interesing hobbies and DIY projects (instead I get a lot of people from Asia doing bricklaying or welding).
Maybe we are in the wrong bucket?
(Or maybe it is a scam, and they hired a ton of people to manually pick addictive videos for selected "influcencers", and the silent masses get random videos to please the masses? :-D)
I'm American and live in Germany, and have tested it in both. In Germany, I get tons of those low-quality videos where they copy/paste something from Youtube and it looks "fried".
> I subscribe to a bunch of... RSS feeds
Does not compute
> I like software engineering, business, product management, marketing, and technology industry generally
Liking the "technology industry generally" is closest to mainstream interests, but even then, people like that their new phone is thinner or their new Xbox has better graphics. Regular consumers aren't too worried about ARM vs Intel, MS dropping support for old PCs, or any use of blockchains beyond asset speculation.
Thinking like that kills immersion for me. For example, I was playing Mass Effect 2 on my Framework (with Wine) yesterday and caught myself thinking about whether any significant internal state would change from the conversation Shepard was having. I shut down that line of thought and dove back into the story.
It's like being a atheist, raised in an atheist house, in a country full of atheists and then going to church for the first time.
If you're not enjoying it, despite using the product as intended, then I'd just guess you and it aren't a good fit. That doesn't seem to be any huge mystery - all products and services have fans and people who aren't interested.
The bot is @rss2tg_bot, if you don't want channels you can just begin a private chat with it and send a rss url. Or add it to a group and then it sends new posts to the group.
Not to mention, who still actually maintains RSS feeds? To be fair idk if it’s really necessary.
But on top of that, just small websites that provide RSS. I change it up here and there.
As for Facebook, I haven't used it since 2008 when it became clear it was a cruddy company led by a misanthrope so I can't speak to that.
I still keep Facebook to check on what are my friends been up to recently. But lately it only has part of that content.
Perhaps it is time for friend feed aggregator.
The launch is always nice because it's being pumped up. Everyone else did this a decade ago. Now they're dumping it for other stuff. Once they get old and have to monetize it will suck like everything else.
I'm tired of talking. I'm tired of convincing. These people are going to get me killed and my life is alarmingly more and more in their hands. I'm just going to start buffaloing people.
But putting pointless distinctions aside, an addiction is an addiction. Gambling addicts won’t die if you lock them in a room for a week (with food and water…), but they’ll go back gambling once you let them out.
Same with TikTok and other social media. They’re creating real addictions in people with real consequences. I’m not an expert scientist doctor man, but afaik addictions are bad.
On the other hand, the constant drip feed of dopamine from social media sites does make people care less about real social interactions.
> In 2015-2016 the site underwent a steady decline of activity leading some to declare the site dead. In 2017, a team led by Oliver Habryka took over the administration and development of the site, relaunching it on an entirely new codebase later that year.
> The new project, dubbed LessWrong 2.0, was the first time LessWrong had a full-time dedicated development team behind it instead of only volunteer hours. Site activity recovered from the 2015-2016 decline and has remained at steady levels since the launch.
> The team behind LessWrong 2.0 has ambitions not limited to maintaining the original LessWrong community blog and forum. The LessWrong 2.0 team conceives of itself more broadly as an organization attempting to build community, culture, and technology which will drive intellectual progress on the world’s most pressing problems.
I'd be curious about their funding
I suspect it's connected to the political rejection of post-modernism (in its actual meaning, not the politically loaded meaning) and with it the Enlightement ideas of reason/rationality (replaced by 'winners' - brazenness and aggression), fact (replaced by 'post-truth'), intellect, universal rights and humanitarianism (replaced by nationalism and reactionaryism), and through those things the power and obligation of humans to better their world and themselves. That rejection was widely normalized, I suspect, in the election of 2016, IME. A problem with talking about these things is a factual basis.
As in: before TikTok, there was lots of TikTop-Temptation to be sold. Demand didn't change, supply did.
I don't know. Maybe I'm not the right personality for this stuff but I found it annoying and taxing.
Open it up and you get these obnoxious videos and then have to press a button to make them go away. The user-base and interaction is worthless and toxic. Lots of people love it so maybe I'm just too old.
Perhaps they've "cracked some psychological secret" but I believe it's more likely they've replicated whatever makes pop music and television work for a lot of people. I have the same kind of distaste for those I have for tiktok.
But good for them. Entertainment is important antidote to stress. Glad people like it
My wife loved it to death, and I just found it incredibly annoying and overbearing even just hearing my wife play with it.
- A dude from Bermuda making food from the early 1900s: @bdylanhollis
- A delivery guy who meets new dogs on his routes and befriends them: @christhedogguy
- A woman who scratches her ass... donkey: @fortheloveofass
- A dude who owns a septic company telling about his day:
- Random animal facts: @mndiaye_97
- Typesetting and printing: @sachistorymuseum
You see the generic dancing crap and memes at first, but the system will learn pretty quickly.
I argue that's most modern "social" media, not necessarily a unique point of tiktok. They want the creator to be the focus, not the community surrounding them. Comments are encouraged to keep short enough to keep engagement but not take that attention away, so you'll inevitably just get some shallow encouragement as "top comments".
That's not necessarily a bad thing, but it's not trying to be what HN is.
You've managed to find the word I've been looking for to describe why I don't like TikTok. It feels taxing. It makes my head spin and after a couple minutes I feel exhausted. Maybe my brain's just too slow and sensitive.
This seems to be a good explanation. TV commercials have figured out some of these tricks, like using a louder volume than the TV show itself, or using a song that's a cover of a more famous, older song.
I find it irritating, but it probably works because older viewers recognize the song and pay attention, while younger viewers mentally attach the cover version to the product being sold.
This isn't to say that TikTok isn't addictive; it clearly is. But I think there are strong recency (it's the New Thing) and exoticism (it's a weird Chinese app) biases in how we talk about it compared to other addictive social media (e.g., saying that users are "obsessed with" $FACEBOOK_PROPERTY instead of describing them as digital addicts.)
Twitter on the other hand seems to promote monoculture, and tends to push you towards what everyone else likes. It essentially pushes whatever is popular. Some of the most interesting content and users on Twitter are shadow banned, either intentionally or through poor auto moderation.
TikTok on the other hand doesn’t care what other people like, and given it’s Chinese ownership, has no political skin in the game. So you tend to see much more diverse views.
Yes, it absolutely does. Nonviolent social activism, LGBTQ content, and anything judged to be "subversive" is downranked/shadowbanned.
I’ve also heard that TikTok wasn’t showing the same contents inside China than abroad. It would be flattering the dopamine receptors worldwide, while flattering nationalist values inside China. Is it true? It could easily be that the engine is personalized enough that it does behave a bit differently.
However, China did pass "Recommendation Algorithm Regulations". Not sure if enforced.
ByteDance does operate a separate Chinese app specifically for kids, which is enforcing the recent anti-gaming regulation (no nighttime access, 40 minutes per day only).
The app also enforces that all kids use their real name, and they stated the following about content:
In the youth mode, we have also prepared wonderful content for you, such as novel and interesting science experiments, exhibitions in museums and galleries, beautiful scenery all over the country, historical knowledge explanations, etc. I hope these contents can arouse children's interest in a certain field, and they will learn and gain something while watching the video.
I don’t use it as entertainment, I never tweet anything myself, I don’t read the replies to tweets and I have retweets turned off for almost all of the people I follow. If someone strays into tweeting about politics, culture wars, woke/antiwokeness then I cull them from my follow list.
It's like a discord server where you set "slow mode" to 5 minutes, remove reactions to comments, and require a 500 character limit to any message. That's one way to try and turn a normally chaotic, real time chat program into a sane platform for longform discussion, but few users would describe discord that was just because one niche server retrofitted it.
I suspect that is because TikTok has different goals compared to other social media companies. Their aim (right now) is to serve you better and/or more relevant content. Whereas other social media companies’ goals are to serve you ads and what do they know about you will not be as apparent to you. I would argue Facebook probably knows even more about you, more than just preferences, but social connections etc from its subsidiaries such as Instagram and WhatsApp.
And that just spelled the death toll. Why would a creator stay on one platform when the other is paying them? Consumers bemoan the constant bombardment of ads and now data tracking, but those are the costs of business if the user isn't directly paying a subscription (something services like Patreon and Onlyfans would take advantadge off around this same time that Vine was struggling. So Vine had potentially more than one way out). And if you don't/can't, some other billion dollar coporation will happily sell their soul for the trillionth time to outcompete.
Instagram, by contrast, just feels so bland now.