TikTok Newsletter 50

German federal election 2021


This is Understanding TikTok your weekly dive into the world of TikTok 🦈 where individuals now spend more time than on YouTube, Facebook or Netflix – at least on Android (TubeFilter). And TikTok has become the first Non-Facebook Mobile App to reach 3 Billion downloads globally (Sensor Tower). Facebook meanwhile plans to pay creators $1 billion to use its products (NYT). My name is Marcus.

This week we talk about:

🇩🇪 German federal election 2021
🏊 Olympians and Paralympians
🍭The UK’s first TikTok pop-up
💸 How much

🇩🇪 German federal election 2021

The 2021 German federal election (Bundestagswahl 2021 #BTW21) will be held on 26 September to elect the 20th Bundestag. Angela Merkel will not seek a fifth term. She has been Chancellor since 2005 one year before the german beta version of Myspace launched 🙀. I will focus on various TikTok related aspects of the election in the coming weeks.

Since 2005 the entire election campaign has seen a radical change. German daily newspaper Der Tagesspiegel has just launched a BTW21 social media dashboard – a data-driven approach to not lose track over the various accounts of all top candidates. Interestingly enough they have not included TikTok. I guess due to the fact that not all parliamentary groups and no top candidates are actively using the platform with their own account. 71,3% of all eligible german voters are over 40 ( 21,3 % are over 70) while the percentage of first voters aged 18-22 is only 4,6% (Bundeswahlleiter).

Nonetheless political social media influencers (PSMI) grow in importance. Just like Influencers grow in importance everywhere else (e.g. Influencers lead news debates in youth-focussed social networks, leaving journalists in the shade).

AfD Stan Accounts

No other german party is making use of them like the Alternative for Germany (German: Alternative für Deutschland, AfD) a German nationalist and right-wing populist political party, a new article (Die AfD läuft sich auf TikTok warm) by Belltower shows. Belltower is a non-profit website founded and operated by the Amadeu Antonio Foundation.

An academic analysis by Serrano et al (The Rise of Germany’s AfD: A Social Media Analysis) has proven the AfD’s superior online popularity relative to the rest of Germany’s political parties in 2019. The evidence also indicated that automated accounts contributed to this online superiority.

I very easily found a lot of TikTok videos by accounts not officially connected to the party that looked like commercials while a lot of comments led to accounts without any published content. To me one of the more interesting things were stan accounts like @Landolf_Ladig (mentioned in the Belltower article) promoting Björn Höcke, co-leader of the far-right faction within the AfD and several ones praising Alice Weidel the leader (together with Alexander Gauland ) of the party in the Bundestag since October 2017. 

While some of them might seem kitschy or even trashy they obviously target different user groups through the usage  of totally different kinds of sounds, emojis and filters including the usage of the 🏳️‍🌈 (Weidel is in a lesbian relationship with a female film producer from Sri Lanka ) or the ily-sound.

What else

🍭Come on-a my house my house, I'm gonna give you candy. The UK’s first TikTok pop-up is to open (rom 22 July to 8 August) in west London, allowing fans to interact with influencers, the Guardian reports. The design of the pop-up venue is inspired by TikTok’s home page. I am glad that they did not choose my For You page for the design.

🏊 Olympians and Paralympians on TikTok. I expect to see more coverage on that. If you are into sports or ritual sacrifices honouring both Zeus and Pelops here is a list of whom to follow (USA Today) and here is another one (Bustle). And here is the US Diving team. And here are the popular Japanese TikTok influencers Ibuki and Yohe speaking to Tokyo 2020 Technical Operation Manager UEHARA Hiroshi on what makes BMX Freestyle such an exciting sport to watch at the Olympics in 2021 (Olympics.com).

🗞️ JournoTok. The trainees of MDR (Central German Broadcasting) – the public broadcaster for the federal states of Thuringia, Saxony and Saxony-Anhalt in Germany – have launched a TikTok channel called “Wahrscheinlich Peinlich” (Probably Embarrassing) by basically copying well established formats like Doktorsex or Umut Özdemir. Let’s see how that goes…

🍒 If you missed the entire Bimbo comeback, here is an article to catch up. Because The Bimbo Is Back. Like, for Real! (Rolling Stone), like Chrissy. The Rise Of The New Age Bimbo (Refinery29). 2021 is the year of the bimbo (i-D). But Are They Transgressive Or Regressive (What’s Trending)?

💸 How much? How much influencers get paid on Instagram, TikTok, and YouTube. Insider has spoken with dozens of influencers who shared how much money they'd earned on social media (Insider). As always. Some earn a lot. And many do not. Compare (#39) 🐿️

👁️ 👁️ Do we need to talk about the “No Such Thing As A Coincidence” Guy? Well. Here is probably all you need to know over at Know Your Meme. By the way the Law of Attraction stuff he is talking about here is pseudoscience at its best. Nevertheless if you liked Lost you will like TikTok videos like this one.  

Maybe, just maybe you have heard this Jeffrey, Jeffrey Bezos song on TikTok. If you are wondering where it actually came from. Here you are. You are welcome.

This is the end. Thx for reading. 50. Wow.