Gen Z is the most connected generation in the history of humanity.
They have a wealth of information at their fingertips, and all they have to do is type a few words in to answer any pressing question they may have. TikTok brought the world together during the pandemic and is most people’s go-to for recipes, dance moves, and a way to pass the time when waiting at the dentist.
Unlike their elders, however, Gen Z is increasingly turning to TikTok for answers of all kind, choosing to eschew Google for the more interactive-friendly format of TikTok.
It makes sense, but it’s causing a problem when it comes to finding the facts – TikTok’s videos contain inaccurate information 1 out of 5 times.
A study by NewsGuard found that 1 out of 5 TikTok vids includes misinformation and tailors content based on the algorithm’s bias. In one example, a search for “covid vaccine” yielded information that paired with the algorithm to provide responses including terms such as “covid vaccine truths” or “covid vaccine HIV.”
Gen Zers are also turning to TikTok for health remedies, which can be dangerous – especially in a post-Roe v Wade world where people in red states are desperate for reproductive solutions.
While there’s nothing wrong with using TikTok as part of your overall approach to information gathering, the sources have to be vetted carefully – something TikTok makes challenging. The best combo would be a TikTok + Google pairing; the best of both worlds.