Friday, January 21News That Matters

Tag: TikTok (ByteDance)

He Makes Justin Bieber and the Bee Gees Go Viral on TikTok

He Makes Justin Bieber and the Bee Gees Go Viral on TikTok

LifeStyle
Name: Griffin HaddrillAge: 24Hometown: Bozeman, Mont.Currently Lives: In a four-bedroom house in Las Vegas with walls covered in street art.Claim to Fame: Mr. Haddrill is a co-founder of VRTCL, an agency hired by major record labels to make songs go viral on TikTok through remixes, mash-ups, meme-able chorus snippets, creator partnerships and other algorithmic alchemy. “I usually start with the lyric sheet to see if there is maybe a trend we can capitalize on or maybe a creative idea around the beat,” he said. For Lil Nas X’s “Montero,” that meant devil-themed makeup tutorials and interpretive dance routines set to the track. He also works with vintage hits like the Bee Gees’ “More Than a Woman,” which thanks to his efforts, has been featured in more than 279,000 TikTok videos including su...
How Big Can a TikTok Duet Get?

How Big Can a TikTok Duet Get?

Technology
In October, Sadie Jean, a singer-songwriter and a sophomore at New York University’s Clive Davis Institute of Recorded Music, hit the road with some friends to work on writing songs. One particular number, a plea for reconnection with someone who slipped away, began to take shape.Jean has a sweet yet sturdy voice, and the song, “WYD Now?,” is an astute nugget of coming-of-age trepidation:I don’t wanna be 20-something, and still in my head about17 in my bedroom talking, you said that by now we’dPaint the walls of our shared apartmentYou’re still everything I want andI think we could work it outThe chorus ends with a cold-call query: “So what are you doing now?”Jean was making TikToks on the trip, and in one of them, a friend urges her to share the song with its subject: “You have to send it...

TikTok Made Them Famous. Figuring Out What’s Next Is Tough.

LifeStyle
Before Charli D’Amelio became the most popular creator on TikTok — she currently has 132 million followers — she danced on the competitive contemporary-dance circuit in the Northeast, the sorts of theatrical styles you might know from “So You Think You Can Dance?” Once she began posting to TikTok in 2019, and especially after her videos began taking off and her family moved to Los Angeles to support the viral dreams of her and her older sister, Dixie (56 million followers), that sort of dance became an afterthought, a relic of an old life.The D’Amelios made a leap from the phone screen to the small screen this year with the Hulu docuseries “The D’Amelio Show,” which captures, in sometimes excruciating detail, the thrills and the wages of TikTok success. Its most curious subplot is about Ch...

Brands Find TikTok a ‘Sunny Place’ for Advertising

Technology
Ever since young Americans began their exodus from commercial television to streaming services and social media, advertisers have searched for the digital equivalent of home shopping channels, a place online where users might engage with ads rather than just quickly clicking past them.Now, they think they’re closer to finding this holy grail of marketing, and it doesn’t look anything like QVC.Welcome to the holiday shopping season on TikTok, where retailers are present like never before, their authentic-seeming advertisements dropped in between dances, confessionals, comedy routines and makeovers.Young men and women showcase shimmering American Eagle tops as pulsating music plays in videos designed to look as though they were filmed in the 1990s. A woman in a unicorn onesie retrieves a spe...

Netflix and the Internet of Fads

Technology
TikTok and Netflix didn’t invent flashes in the pan, of course. But the infinite nature of the internet and online mechanics have supercharged the 15 minutes of fame.“Some of us and some businesses will learn to accept that fame comes five seconds and not 15 minutes at a time,” Tal Shachar, a media and video game executive, wrote last year.Nearly each day or week, there is a fresh piece of digital entertainment or an online celebrity mania that comes and goes much faster than fast fashion.Netflix drives fads for wearing track suits or taking up chess. The Reddit mobs that tried to track down the Boston Marathon bombers in 2013 morphed into regular TikTok vigilante crusades. The viral internet celebrity machine of the 2010s feels musty compared with the rapid minting of online stars like th...

The ‘13 Going on 30’ Versace Dress Has Come Full Circle

LifeStyle
A funny thing happened on Nov. 8 on the set of “The Voice”: Ariana Grande, the show’s newest coach, came to work in a Versace dress that had been widely worn as a Halloween costume just a week earlier.The colorful minidress — with its crystallized straps, cutesy empire-waist cutouts and chunky stripes in shades of turquoise, lime green and scarlet — appeared on the Italian luxury brand’s spring 2003 runway. But the style is best known for its brief turn in the 2004 romantic comedy “13 Going on 30,” worn by Jennifer Garner as her character, Jenna Rink, performs the “Thriller” dance at a work party.Nearly two decades after its introduction, that dress has found a new life, thanks in part to online retailers selling uncannily similar styles for less than $20. Vogue predicted in mid-October th...
Thinking Hard About Their Hair

Thinking Hard About Their Hair

LifeStyle
Many mornings, in Los Angeles, Darrell Jones’s girlfriend helps him curl his hair. Running a flat iron over small sections that have been sprayed with heat protectant, she creates small ringlets, pinning them to his head to set. For a brief moment, he looks like he’s gearing up to be the envy of the 1930s. After the tendrils cool, Mr. Jones, 21, sets them with hair spray and runs his fingers through his locks.Across the country in Wilmington, N.C., Tristan Harrell, 17, creates a similar look with a somewhat modified routine. Mr. Harrell starts with wet hair and uses sea salt spray in lieu of heat protectant (although his mother, a salon owner, begs him to choose protectant) before blow drying his tresses forward. Depending on the day, he’ll either create flipped-up curls with a brush and b...
Mozzarella Sticks Are Having a Moment

Mozzarella Sticks Are Having a Moment

LifeStyle
Scroll TikTok for even just a few minutes, and you’re likely to encounter a video of gooey cheese being pulled into shiny, stretchy strands. It’s a mesmerizing moment — scientifically proven to release brain chemicals similar to the ones involved in addiction.The mozzarella stick is one of the most recognizable formats for this so-called cheese pull. Soft and springy in the middle, crispy and golden on the outside, it calls to mind bowling alleys and school cafeterias of yore.Recently, the dish has had a cultural resurgence. It makes appearances on high-end restaurant menus and viral cooking videos — driven, perhaps, by Americans’ desire for nostalgic comfort food during a pandemic, or simply the pleasant aesthetics.Last year, Tim Szuta introduced a baton-size mozzarella stick to increase ...
YouTube, Snap and TikTok executives take their turn answering to Washington.

YouTube, Snap and TikTok executives take their turn answering to Washington.

Technology
Lawmakers on Tuesday grilled executives from YouTube, Snap and TikTok about mounting concerns that their platforms can harm children and teenagers.A bipartisan group of senators expressed concerns that the companies’ software steered young people toward inappropriate posts, mishandled consumer data and did not do enough to spot dangerous content on their platforms. Lawmakers repeatedly said their staff had been able to find harmful content — including posts related to self-harm and pornography — inside the companies’ products, sometimes while logged in as a teenager.Senator Richard Blumenthal, Democrat of Connecticut, opened the hearing by accusing the companies of drawing young people further and further into their products.“Everything that you do is to add users, especially kids, and kee...
Eating Disorders and Social Media Prove Difficult to Untangle

Eating Disorders and Social Media Prove Difficult to Untangle

Technology
On Twitter, creators routinely share advice for crash diets and encourage disordered eating, and some amass tens of thousands of followers in the process. Twitter’s algorithms automatically suggest related accounts and topics for users to follow, based on the accounts they view. When a Twitter user views accounts that promote eating disorders, Twitter recommends topics like “fashion models,” “fitness apps & trackers,” “mindful eating” and “workout videos.”Twitter said that its policies prohibit content that promotes eating disorders or provides instructions or strategies for maintaining them, and that the company primarily relies on users to report violative content. A spokeswoman for the company said that its topic recommendations differed by account.“While we remove content that viol...