TikTok provides students with breaks, not distractions


Farahn Santiago Koegler

Teens continue to use the social media app, TikTok, ever since it became popular in 2018.

Farahn Santiago, Reporter

TikTok, an app created by Zhang Yiming, was released in September 2016. It began to gain popularity in early 2018 and has been in the top app downloads since 2018.

Tiktok tracks a user’s search history and uses the information to suggest videos that the person likes. This algorithm keeps the viewers interested and engaged in the app. The videos on TikTok range from 15 to 60 seconds.

“The videos are so short you can keep on watching,” Senior Marina Nevin said.

The short entertaining videos are a way to keep viewers interested in the app while promoting different content from influencers and creators.

According to Brain World, “The reason Facebook and other forms of social media are so addicting and hard to quit is due to the instant gratification that they provide.”

Depending on the viewer’s interests, the information displayed on TikTok is geared specifically towards what intrigues them and what will keep them in the app for longer.

“It’s addicting but it does not distract me,” Senior Jillian Wilson said. “Once I feel like I’ve watched enough, I’ll get off of it.”

Creating a healthy relationship with social media helps to create a healthy bond between the users and platforms. Based on Wallaroo Media, people spend an average of 52 minutes a day on TikTok, depending on their age. Younger kids spend more time on TikTok, about 80 minutes a day.

“I spend at least up to two hours, but not consecutively,” Wilson said.

People can break up the time they spend on a social media platform to make it easier for them to do other tasks at hand. Senior Paulina Cortez said she spends an average of 30 minutes to an hour a day.

“[I use social media] when I’m bored or just when I go on my phone,” Cortez said.

When people are done doing their work, homework, or chores, their most common use of a break can be spent on TikTok or on other platforms. Some can easily get off it while others may struggle. Even though being on the phone all day may seem like a nice distraction from the real world, it’s nice to get off for a while and enjoy what’s around you. Experts suggest spending less than two hours per day on the screen.

“Try to find other things that you may enjoy, for example, painting, drawing, watching TV with your family, or playing a game with your family,” Wilson said. “Just [get] off your phone for a little.”