Without going deep (simply because I have not that time in the least bit), many of us have used social media in some shape or form since it’s been created (remember when the term was called “social networking?). All the old messenger platforms, like AOL Instant Messenger (AIM), Window Messenger, MySpace, Facebook, BlackPlanet, Asian Avenue, 2600, Usenet Groups, Compuserve, Twitter, TikTok, Instagram, Periscope, Vine (which I miss…LOL) Mastodon, and the longggg list goes on.
What is inherent to all social media/networking platforms are trends, and I don’t mean “such-and-such hashtag” is trending. What I do mean are actions people take, trends that started than many participate in.grab on to that catch on like wildfire. There have been sooo many that’s I’ve seen come and go that I’ll try to remember some to discuss. Incidentally, this topic came to mind because the approach I generally end up taking is: If everyone is doing it, I’m definitely not doing it LOL
To avoid being wordy, I resolve to my usual list to give some example and touch on a few.
- The use of stable fusion technology to create AI Art (particularly of selfies)
- TikTok Invisible Body Challenge
- Age prediction photos (this is how I’ll look X amount of years from now)
- Milk Crate Climbing Challenge
Why these trends emerge, last for some time, then die off, can be for many reasons. I’ll venture to say that many of them do so for the simple reason of what social media perpetuates: reach and exposure which hopefully results in follows and likes of one’s social media feed. Though I make a point not to follow any of them, I do notice what the algorithms throw onto my feeds. Let’s start with the first one…
#AIArt – I’ve been noticing a bunch of people using whatever this stable fusion technology is to create very realistic and accurate drawings of themselves. With that, I’ve seen a fair number of people criticizing this as technology that takes away from the most talented artists that can do the same by hand (nothing new here with AI taking over in instances like this). I’ve seen a few people I follow posting selfies of themselves in this manner.
TikTok Invisible Body Challenge – This one is particularly interesting to me because of the cybersecurity issues that many are clueless about. What is this challenge, you may ask? It goes like this: challenge requires you to film yourself naked while using TikTok’s “Invisible Body” filter, which removes the body from the video and replaces it with a blurry background and this challenge has led to people posting videos of them allegedly naked but obscured by the filter. First of all, why would ANYONE have no issue with “film yourself naked while using TikTok’s “Invisible Body” filter” (someone, help me on this … please). It gets even “better”…”hackers are capitalizing on this trending challenge named to install malware on thousands of devices and steal their passwords, Discord accounts, and, potentially, cryptocurrency wallets. To capitalize on this, threat actors are creating TikTok videos that claim to offer a special “unfiltering” filter to remove TikTok’s body masking effect and expose the TikTokers’ nude bodies. However, this software is fake and installs the “WASP Stealer (Discord Token Grabber)” malware, capable of stealing Discord accounts, passwords and credit cards stored on browsers, cryptocurrency wallets, and even files from a victim’s computer.” This is pretty much what I’m referring to by jumping on the social media trends bandwagon – doing things just because it’s a trend and you know clue of what the implications could be (especially in a case like this) because you’re essentially acting like sheep. You can read more about this challenge and the hacking approach here.
Wordle – I have no idea what this game is or how it’s played but I number of people I follow on Twitter pepper my feed with their daily Wordle results
Age prediction photos – This one’s seem to die off but, boy, I’ve seen a ton of followers jumping on this one BIG time. Sort of the same use of AI thing as #AIArt. Lately I’ve seen the same approach but applied to dead celebrities who’s been deceased for some time now, but showing how they would look if they were still alive today.
Milk Crate Climbing Challenge – One of the DUMBEST, ignorant, and most dangerous challenges I can remember seeing in some time. I’m glad that one is dead and gone….(isn’t it?).
As said above, if the proliferation of such is even noticeable, you won’t catch me involved (can you say TikTok? – that’s an entire different story that I don’t even understand regarding the continual security concerns with the platform).
Anyway, do you indulge? No judgement here, just asking for a friend 🙂
Have a great day!