This Is What TikTok Users Think About The Internet Hating Them
The shaming of TikTok users has become a regular occurrence on Twitter and YouTube.
Back in August, Chinese music video app TikTok merged with Musical.ly to create a bigger community network under the former's name.
People were always divided over whether Musical.ly was a super-creative platform or a very odd place that catered to young people.
And that didn't really change when it was relaunched as part of TikTok.
Hate for TikTok and its users has become pretty common, as have threads and compilations of videos that people find weird or corny.
So why do people use TikTok if it's hated so much?
For a start, a lot of creators are on there because it's very easy to grow a fanbase quickly.
Since the relaunch, the app has had a significant boost in popularity — it is currently in the top 10 apps on Google Play, and videos from it regularly appear across social media.
People have also said that it's easy to quickly amass followers on the app.
Zak Baldwin, a 22-year-old from Louisiana who has had a video of his appear in a TikTok thread, told BuzzFeed News that he was sold on the app when he rapidly gained video views and followers.
"Because there are such a big number of people on the app, your videos are always getting views," he said. "And there is a page called 'for you' and if your content is good you get put on there and start getting noticed by TikTok."
Baldwin says it took him about four posts before his content started to take off. He started his account in July, when the app was still Musical.ly, and currently has 48,000 fans.
And a lot of those who use it do so for the creative tools and freedom it offers.
Many of those on the app experiment in cosplay, dance, and other expressive arts. They argue that a lot of the hate aimed at them is because people outside TikTok don't understand their work.
"I try and make satirical videos as I find a lot the content on TikTok really cringe-worthy," Louise Shuttleworth, a 17-year-old from East Yorkshire in England, told BuzzFeed. Her videos regularly appear in shaming threads, which she blames on people not understanding her humor. She also thinks that the relatively young age of the app's users makes it easier for people to look down on the content.
The TikTok users BuzzFeed News spoke to admitted there were problems with some content on the app, but argued that this is a problem with all social media right now, and TikTok is just overwhelmingly highlighted.
The level of hate toward TikTok creators means that some say they are receiving abuse when their videos are put into threads.
Matthew Worthington, a 22-year-old theater student from Minnesota, said he wants to be a children's entertainer, so uses TikTok to practice costumes, cosplay, and comedy skits. He likes the app as it's aimed at kids, so he can develop his skills in an appropriate setting.
He said that when his videos appear in threads, it often brings abuse. "I'm told to die, commit suicide, etc... Daily. It's draining to say the least," he said. "I think it's fair to criticize things in Twitter threads, but death threats, slurs, and insults aren't a criticism."
However, some of those who have appeared in shaming threads actually see them as a blessing in disguise.
"If people want to take my video and make fun of it, at least tag me because I know someone will see it and like it," said Baldwin.