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The Tiktokification of the Music Industry

The 1980s one-hit-wonder Video Killed the Radio Star by The Buggles has proven itself true over the years. Yet, the advent of TikTok only further complicates the role of video-sharing in the modern music industry.

The growing popularity of TikTok has altered how music is produced, shared, and consumed, forcing music labels to rethink the power that this social media app holds. Capitalizing upon this power can ultimately skyrocket upcoming artists into fame. But, at what point does going viral start to matter more than integrity in pursuing social media stardom?

The nature of TikTok’s algorithm gives artists an easy and inexpensive opportunity to promote their new music. But, in reality, it’s all about creating an authentic narrative, or, at least, the illusion of one.

Having a compelling story, relatable lyrics, or catchy beat in a song stimulates more interaction, supplying more exposure for the artist. However, when music labels begin to prioritize marketing over music, the quality of songs lessens.

By measuring success in terms of going viral on TikTok, songs lose their meaning as music labels demand more superficial social media content.