You didn’t return any results. Please clear your filters.
04 April 2022
What is TikTok brain?
Marketing to childrenWebsites, online services, appsOnline video audiences
Emerging research appears to show that the consumption of ultra short videos, the kind that have made TikTok a young media colossus, make it harder for viewers, especially children, to perform tasks that don’t give them instant gratification.
Why it matters
Ultimately, the trouble seems to be that TikTok can capture attention extremely effectively, to the point that it can make concentration harder. This is good news if you’re advertising to consenting adults but could have pretty dire consequences for the future. TikTok, and the brands that advertise with it, should prepare for more scrutiny of these effects.
What’s going on
TikTok isn’t hard to watch, and isn’t yet shown to be damaging in and of itself. But it can make it quite difficult for kids to switch to tasks that do not provide the constant stimulation that TikTok does.
The Wall Street Journal explores a study on TikTok’s equivalent in China, Douyin (both are owned by ByteDance) suggesting that short videos stimulate the brain’s reward centres, areas sometimes associated with addiction.
Effectively, this is because TikTok is a “dopamine machine”, according to one paediatrician, reinforcing cravings for an expected reward.
Of course, TikTok isn’t the only social medium with addictive features, but it is relatively different in that you don’t need to scroll.