The Sonic Side of TikTok

A Brief Sonic Ecological Survey of TikTok Meme Culture“, by Max Alper. A super interesting article on sound based memes on TikTok:

All of the above styles of TikTok audio are made by users intentionally using top of the line social media tools somewhat incorrectly, at least according to the developers of the technology. Of course you’re not supposed to stick your earbud mic down your throat, just as you’re not supposed to scream at the top of your lungs through a fancy autotune filter or apply scotch tape directly to the grill of a condenser mic. Perhaps it’s by using these audio tools in unexpectedly “wrong” ways that young people continue to keep it fresh; the more extreme and unexpected the sound is, the more “based” it can be. I’ve been told that’s a good thing.”

Synthetic Messenger

Synthetic Messenger

“Synthetic Messenger is a botnet that artificially inflates the value of climate news. Everyday it searches the internet for news articles covering climate change. Then 100 bots visit each article and click on every ad they can find”.

And you can watch them live on Zoom while they do so.
Great project by Tega Brain and Sam Lavigne.

How to Disappear

“How to Disappear is an anti-war movie in the true sense of the word, searching for possibilities for peace in the most unlikely place of an online war game. It’s a tribute to disobedience and desertion – in both digital and physical-real warfare.”

The Girlfriend Hostage Situation on TikTok

“Marcus DiPaola is a journalist who covers trending headlines in a TV reporter style to his 2.5M followers on TikTok. On May 4th, 2021, Star Wars Day, Marcus posted a new TikTok introducing his girlfriend to his large audience. It’s a pretty normal video, but TikTok has a mind of its own.”

[via]

The side-effects that tends to get us

“The only appropriate response is the most profound ambivalence. That’s what we owe new technologies: we have to teach ourselves to be absolutely ambivalent about them, and mainly we have to teach ourselves to imagine their inadvertent side-effects. Because the inadvertent side-effects are the side-effects that tends to get us”

(William Gibson, 1997)

Reality Shifters

I recently discovered the existence of “reality shifting”. In brief, thousands of people – mostly teenagers – claim to be able to jump to (and live in) alternative realities, in some kind of lucid dream, after having carefully scripted it all. There are different suggested methods for shifting, which sometimes are simple and sometimes very complex. The most popular alternative reality (DR – desired reality) is Hogwarts, the Harry Potter school of magic, where some people claim to have spent weeks. TikTok and YouTube are full of these videos and I literally can’t stop watching them.