VSCO girls, scrunchies and Fortnite are only some of the trends that the world left behind as we moved into the new decade. However, TikTok is one of those trends that has only increased in popularity in 2020. Everybody wants to be TikTok famous and walking around many secondary schools in London, you are bound to see someone ‘renegading’ up the stairs or doing something ridiculous to stand out on the app and get that much sought after TikTok fame.

TikTok is a video-sharing social networking app which allows people to make short videos to express their creativity. It was originally called musical.ly, but once the app lost popularity, it was redesigned and become TikTok, a hybrid between YouTube and Vine. With over 100million users worldwide and videos ranging from dancing to comedic skits to singing, the app appeals to everyone, which is why it is no surprise that teenagers all over the world have been struck with ‘TikTok Fever.’

But how much is too much? Is this TikTok obsession going too far? When asked if they had ever noticed the app and its addictive dances affecting students in school, the Heads of KS4 at the Henrietta Barnett School said that because no one has ever really looked into it, it is very difficult to determine if it has any affect and if so how great this affect is.

However, they did say that when they asked students how long they spent learning TikTok dances, whilst most said not too long, some admitted to spending much longer than they perhaps should be, and at this point perhaps it became a cause for concern as it began distracting them from other work.

This is not only something teachers have realised, but students themselves have admitted that TikTok is addictive and have taken precautions themselves. Quite a few students said their new years resolution was to stay off TikTok or at least limit the time they spend on it.

Arushi Singhai, a student at HBS, stated, “I found myself spending hours and hours scrolling through TikTok … I was wasting so much time. I decided to delete it to allow myself more time to do the things I like and enjoy, but still allow myself to watch 15-minute compilations on YouTube.’ She said that, although she was convinced she would cave, she didn’t and thinks she could still continue without it. ‘It has taught me that I don’t really gain much from the app and that I have more valuable things to do with my time,’ she said.

It seems that everywhere you go, everyone knows what TikTok is. It may continue to grow in popularity as 2020 progresses, and there will always be new dances to learn, new songs to lip-sync and new creative ways to get on the famous ‘for you page.’ Of course, it is a lot of fun to make videos on the platform and the entertainment gained from it is immense, but it is important to realise when you should take a break and make sure it does not take over.

By Aashi Shah