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Why TikTok Ruled the World (Especially the Philippines) in 2020

Everyone wanted to be on TikTok.
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TikTok exploded in 2020 as quarantined Filipinos found an outlet for their creativity and later on, political views. The Chinese video-sharing has earned its spot beside Facebook, Instagram and Twitter on millions of smartphone home screens.

The app's endless scroll is a bottomless pit of cooking hacks, dance challenges, trivia and boys and girls looking for attention. For those on the frontlines like the World Health Organization, it became a pulpit for proper handwashing and social distancing.

"On TikTok, countless creators have used their talents and creativity for good, transforming the app into a positive space where people can come together for entertainment, enjoyment, and even learning," the app said.

Creators set their own limits on TikTok. Nothing seems off-limits, adding to its appeal. As part of our 2020 Yearenders, we list down five reasons why TikTok ruled the world this year.

Everyone wanted to be on TikTok.

In 2020, everyone wanted to be on TikTok—from the budding social media star to the World Health Organization—it was the go-to app for millions who were forced to stay home due to COVID-19 lockdowns as they were glued on their mobile phone screens.

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In the Philippines, the Department of Health maximized the influence of TikTok with videos of proper handwashing as well as reminders of COVID-19 precautionary measures.

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Even government officials such as Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles and Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque joined the TikTok craze with their own dance videos.

It sets trends.

Photo by TIKTOK / FACEBOOK.
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TikTok was 2020's biggest trendsetter—so much so that the fads spill over to Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.

From dance challenges such as #binibiningmarikit, and #Itreallyhurts to creative #wipeitdown videos—Tiktok dictated the pace on what's the latest cool trend on social media.

This Christmas for instance, Filipinos on TikTok danced to ATMs to the tune of Aegis' hit 'Christmas Bonus.' 

According to TikTok, these 10 hashtags made it to the top of the 2020 trending list:

TikTok gave Gen Zs a voice.

Photo by INSTAGRAM/YOURLOLOGAB.
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The year 2020 was a defining year for Gen Z, who saw how with older generations in charge, things weren't looking so well.

At the crossroads between being young and adults, fun-loving and "woke" Gen Zs like Gab Campos used TikTok to find their voice in the crowded world of social media.

TikTok became a platform for social issues.

While Facebook and Twitter are no longer new to political content and social commentary, it’s only during the pandemic that Tiktok saw the rise of social and political commentary.

Filipino content creator Dora Dorado, known as Doracrybaby, said the pandemic and the political developments or lack thereof that came along with it pushed social media personalities like him to mix politics and entertainment in TikTok.

It's a platform for entertainment and information.

Photo by TIKTOK/INKAMAGNAYE.
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TikTok is an accidental news platform, something which the Chinese-made app is now embracing. This year, users of the app harnessed TikTok's potential to be both informative and entertaining.

More than dance challenges and food hacks, TikTok also supported initiatives worldwide to help raise awareness on the COVID-19 pandemic.

This story originally appeared on Reportr.World. Minor edits have been made by the Esquiremag.ph editors.

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Arianne Merez For Reportr
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