Today anyone with a phone can broadcast to the entire world. TNS
In the past decade, the use of social media has grown in a way that no one could have guessed. It has turned some teenagers into celebrities and turned the famous into the infamous, overnight.
A key feature of social media, however, is its volatility. Trends come and go, disappearing almost as quickly as they appeared. So, what were the key social media trends of 2018?
Short video apps such as Tik Tok and its Chinese equivalent Douyin, took the world by storm. The Telegraph reported that Tik Tok was ranked 8th on Apple’s App Store in April. And Douyin had more than 300 million domestic monthly active users in June, CNBC said.
短视频应用Tik Tok（抖音国际版）和抖音席卷全球。据《每日电讯报》报道，去年4月，Tik Tok在苹果应用商店上的下载量排名第八。而据CNBC报道，去年6月，抖音在国内的月活跃用户超过3亿。
Why are these short videos – which are rarely longer than a few minutes – all the rage? Jiang Yige, Singapore-based analyst at FengHe Fund Management, has a theory. Short videos are “just right to fill in the little gaps in our busy schedules,” he told CNBC.
These videos – apart from being very convenient – are important to teenagers because they allow them to express themselves, according to Teen Vogue.
The sense of community that users of short video app get is another appealing feature. Liza Koshy, a user of the US app Musical.ly who has over 2 million followers, said that she was thrilled when anyone said that her video had “inspired” them. “It’s really cool … because I think as social creators that’s what we all are,” she added.
Live streaming is a feature of our social media life that now seems as natural as sunrise. It’s a pretty neat idea: You can watch anyone, anywhere, live.
However, China has taken live streaming to a whole new level. In China, more than 100 million viewers monthly watch a live streaming video. Forbes thought that a number of factors had led to the popularity of live streams. Among them is viewers’ ability to interact while remaining anonymous.
However, the boom in social media may be having side effects too. Fake news is one serious problem it arguably causes.
Material shared on these platforms is often not checked for accuracy. The most basic content can be false and can sway users one way or another.
We use social media all the time; that doesn’t mean that we understand the influence it is having on us. We should be mindful of both the time we spend on it and its impact on our minds.