The Yassification of Shrek

No Darling, it’s not Pomegranate; Material Gworl, Euphoria, international women’s day

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🎵 Top Sounds 🎵

Our curated picks of the top sounds on TikTok

  1. No Darling, It’s not Pomegranate 
    This sound is being used with a repeated video format. Someone will suggest why a thing is a certain way and then reveal what’s actually going on. Looking for a political example? This use of the sound to explain some of the rhetoric around Ukraine.
  2. [Emo Singing] 💇🏻‍♂️This sound is a personal attack on anyone who listened to Fall Out Boy in their “Patrick Stump has quite the hat collection” era. This sound is being used over videos of people (and even dogs) with a serious bayang (you remember those 2009 bangs?). This sound evokes a particular type of rawr-era cringe.
  3. I’m Smart But I’m Stupid 🤪This is an Alanis Morisette parody that is being used to describe members of friend groups, fictional characters, and TV casts.
  4. Hey, isn’t this easy? 
    Rise up Swifties, she’s done it again. A part of a Taylor Swift song is to TikTok as an unhinged villain is to Twitter. It is the bread and butter of the platform. A trend that is so easy to use and apply to so many contexts. In this case, it is simply pointing out what you, by no means, need to do. It really is easy.
  5. If I Were A… 🎨
    This is a creative trend in which folks pair this sound with who they are as an album, location, painting, etc. It’s a great sound if you’re trying to express who you are to a new audience.

🔉Our Sound Highlight: Material Gworl

Mood: 🤑💅

The thing that’s amazing about this trend is all the spin-offs. Folks have been taking the original sound and remixing it and changing it up. Take this version for example. We’re highlighting this sound while it is still a trend to hop on and as a reminder that TikTok is full of instances of remixing popular sounds that become their own trends. Relatedly, Maddona’s Material Girl has also been trending. The material girl, in earnest or jest, is having a cultural moment.

📺 Video Highlight 📺

It’s time to wipe off that camera lens and let us see the change that you want to see! Nonprofit organization One More Child is utilizing TikTok and some video skills to showcase their efforts in doing like their name suggests, bringing resources to foster kids, feeding programs, and single parents’ homes. They want to see if the TikTok community can come together for good, and we would love to see it!

🌞 Impact Account 🌞

A non-profit, candidate, or organization getting content right

The Democrats

The Democratic Party has a TikTok account as of last week. The account is very new, but we’re interested to see how the party makes use of TikTok.

🔭 Tactic Watch 🔭

The tactic you might want to use in your advocacy content

The TikTok algorithm loves to reward the use of effects. Especially when those effects are trending. Take Image Spin, for example. TikTok creators paired Image Spin with Gangnam Style in the last two weeks to do surprise reveals. Another example is Shrek in some thigh-highs. The algorithm wants what it wants.

🗣️ The Moment 🗣️

Issues that are at the forefront of online discourse


I would be remiss if I did not address that the Russian invasion of Ukraine has been at the forefront of online conversation for the past two weeks. As this is a trends report, I will not break down the evident horror of the situation but I will discuss is how this is playing out on our phone screens.

The invasion has been discussed on nearly every platform in every imaginable way. TikTok has played a role as Ukrainians share their experiences. Take this girl’s video “things in our bomb shelter that just make sense” as an example of how some Ukrainians are sharing their experiences. There is also a sound trending on the platform, specifically for content about Ukraine. Here’s someone using that sound to make chicken kiev and someone else using the sound to share art and a message about resilience. Elsewhere online, we have heard directly from African students struggling to gain entry into neighboring countries and how reporters display white-supremacist tendencies in their descriptions of “what makes Ukraine different.”

From my own feed, I was reminded of how interconnected we are through social media. Strangely, my first glimpse at the bombing of a building in Kharkiv didn’t come from a world news service but from a small, fashionable, Italian greyhound who happened to reside in the city. This interconnectedness online is playing a huge role in how we view crises, and whose voices we have access to.

☕ The Zeitgeist ☕

Hot topics from across the internet

  • Looking back at Tumblr, 15 years later, and the impact on Generation T.
  • Love Is Blind concluded its second season on Netflix and it is a hot topic on TikTok with several of the cast members being active on the platform. Also due to the season’s villain one cast member, there has been a lot of talk about internalized racism, fatphobia, and desirability politics.
    • Also, this cast member had Shaun King check in on him. Yikes.
  • Euphoria season 2finished on HBO. We’ll miss the TikTok sounds.
  • Arthur, the beloved PBS cartoon endedD.W is a cop. No one is surprised.
  • Women on Twitter shared their pay-inequality stories for IWD. While this bot responds to employers’ tweets with the organization’s pay gap.
  • Biden urged workers to go “back to the office” and people have takes (the common response: hell no).

🧑🏽‍🎓 Takeaways 🧑🏽‍🎓

We do this work every day and we see the changes to trends and the platform in real-time. We also undertake experimentation work and invest in trying new things. With all that said, here’s what we’ve learned from our campaigns this week:

There’s more than one way to talk about history and culture.

Some of the most interesting ways of expressing thoughts on race, community, and history come from accounts that do not provide traditional political commentary. Take @nikki.mov for example. She’s turned cooking greens for Sunday night dinner and beignets into discussions about Black history in the United States. It isn’t just food content that can provide a window into history and culture. @shugabonessharva follows in a West-African tradition of oral storytelling, with videos telling African American folktales, dubbing herself a TikTok griot.

As we consider mobilization, we think about how people enter conversations about political issues. These accounts show a small fraction of the ways people create community on TikTok. We think starting from shared experiences like storytelling and food can be great lead-ins to discussing pressing issues.