The Kids Use TikTok Now Because Data-Mined Videos Are So Much Fun

I vowed never to change a headline when I share an article, but I admit it's hard to leave "The kids use..." there without at least adding a 🙄 emoji. Despite the unfortunate title, this is a good article on the video-sharing app from the Chinese-owned Bytedance. It has a younger audience than Facebook, and a novel approach to how it decides what content to show you.

TikTok decides what videos to show by tapping into data, starting with your location. Then, as you start watching, it analyzes the faces, voices, music, or objects in videos you watch the longest. Liking, sharing, or commenting improves TikTok’s algorithm further. Within a day, the app can get to know you so well it feels like it’s reading your mind. That’s why Jade, the Oklahoma teen, mostly sees videos of people dancing, while her mom regularly gets clips of dog tricks.


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