The TikTok Generation

One generation got old
One generation got soul

Jefferson Airplane

It’s bottom up. And the oldsters have got no clue.

I found this story in my Twitter feed:

“TikTok Teens and K-Pop Stans Say They Sank Trump Rally – Did a successful prank inflate attendance expectations for President Trump’s rally in Tulsa, Okla?”

But it’s not on the “New York Times” homepage, so if you think you’re up to date by skimming the Gray Lady constantly, you’re wrong. You’ve got to dig.

But it’s easier to find out on the excoriated Twitter, where this is tonight’s story. And tomorrow you’ll know it too. Stories start on Twitter. The news is first on Twitter. You keep hearing about the opinions and the arguing, but who is following those people anyway, I’m just looking for INFORMATION!

Now the music business sees TikTok as its tool. After being caught flat-footed by the success of “Old Town Road,” and then bringing it in-house at Sony, the labels decided they wanted some of that action. If TikTok could build the unknown Lil Nas X, imagine what it could do with a known quantity, a star?

The music business used to be first, but now it’s last. Because it is controlled by old people who did not get the memo, who believe they are indispensable and that no one can resist their money.

But isn’t it funny that not a single musical star has captured the zeitgeist of the Minneapolis/Black Lives Matter explosion in a song we all know. Illustrating that reflecting life, and opening up an audience’s eyes as to the way of life, are not part of the equation. In the music business, it’s all about collecting fans and milking them dry. When one of the biggest acts in the business, Justin Bieber, tries to manipulate the system to make his record number one, who in the hell is gonna listen to the words of a pop star?

They’re listening to themselves.

This internet revolution has been going on for twenty five years. At least twenty, however you calculate it. But the power elite, in government and media, have still not gotten the memo. They think it’s still top-down. Example #1, the utter failure of Quibi. Which is never going to make it. The parts will be sold to somebody and Katzenberg will declare victory, but don’t you believe it. Turns out Jeffrey knew all the insiders, which is how the old game was played, he not only did not know the outsiders, he didn’t understand their power, of user-generated content, of word of mouth.

So, you’re asking if an outside entity, like Russia, could sway opinion and tilt the election…well if teens, many of whom can’t even vote, can snooker the the Trump team and the entire media, the answer most definitely is YES!

And it wasn’t only TikTok. It was K-Pop “Stans.” You remember that old Eminem tune don’t you? Set to Dido’s “Thank You”? If you investigate, the K-Pop stars are not just dancing fools, two-dimensional cardboard acts manipulated by Svengalis behind the scenes. This is not the Backstreet Boys or ‘NSYNC, the K-Pop acts evidence a whole culture, where the members of the act testify as to their truth online, and fans eat it up. Yes, the Spotify Top 50 come and go, but K-Pop sustains, because it’s all about the CULTURE! We learned that back in the classic rock era, but we seem to have lost the formula.

And speaking of the classic rock formula, Jefferson Airplane released “Volunteers” in late ’69 and you were either on the bus or you were off. And if you don’t get the reference, you were most definitely not on the bus. And so many of the lyrics of that fifty year old number still resonate:

Ain’t it amazing all the people I meet

Doesn’t matter if someone is physically close, today’s teens have friends all over the world.

Hey now it’s time for you and me

Turns out the turning point is coming with Gen-Z, not the millennials. For all the talk about the millennial ethos, most of it wrong, how do you explain Zuck, it turns out change is truly coming from the younger generation, which is not old enough to have been beaten down yet, who grew up with the internet, never mind smartphones, and despite their parents wanting to be best friends, there’s no way this can happen. Because they’re digital natives, and their parents are not.

It’s harder to learn new tricks when you’re older. And you don’t want to spend the time to learn new tricks. So, what you do is denigrate, push aside and then feel superior, however delusional that might be.

That’s what happened in the sixties, with the generation gap. And it’s happening again right now.

Look at the tweets. People with teens in the house knew about this prank. But they didn’t have access to a megaphone. And those with the megaphone, the teens, didn’t want to amplify the story, for fear of the joke getting out. IT WAS HIDING IN PLAIN SIGHT and the media and the Democrats missed it!

As for the low attendance…

It doesn’t matter anyway.

Did you actually listen to Trump’s speech? To a leftie, it was almost funny if it wasn’t so horrifying. But if you were an acolyte, it spoke to you. Trump, however bumbling, is dynamic, he goes for the jugular, he gives the illusion of being relaxed, and is almost cracking jokes, however wooden they might be, failing to truly land because Trump can’t let go of his hubris.

On the other side we’ve got…

Another bumbling septuagenarian, but this one can barely get it out, and when he does, he’s prone to misstatements.

Oh, that looks good.

The best thing happening to Biden is Covid-19, it prevents him from reaching the people and screwing up his message and having these faux pas amplified by not only the right wing media, but the left wing media too, in an effort to appear fair. Biden is playing by twentieth century rules, Trump by twenty first, where it’s all about followers, set yourself on fire, do whatever you need to gain attention. And he’s winning at that.

And Gen-Z understands this too. Watch a few TikTok clips, this is not AP students commenting on Camus. The game is to be as outrageous as possible so that you’ll go viral. But despite this focus on individual triumph, Gen-Z knows its collective power, and just like the millennials, and unlike their boomer parents, Gen-Z knows your primary desire is to be a member of the group.

And the power of this group can be harnessed.

So what really happened in Tulsa?

Were there just not that many people who wanted to see Trump? Or was some of his constituency afraid of getting Covid-19?

One thing is for sure, Trump and the media expected many more people than showed up. The narrative was incorrect.

As for facts… Trump’s team is already saying he was joking when he said he told his people to not test for Covid anymore. It almost doesn’t matter what he says… The left prints it and alternately laughs and screams, and the right doesn’t even come across it, and if it does, it does not care.

So if the left thinks it is winning…

It’s a long way to the election baby. And it’s Biden’s race to lose. And never underestimate his power to do this. This is not the first time Joe’s run for president, last time he blew himself up, he’s got a long tradition of doing this, as well as enough skeletons in his closet to fill a graveyard.

The Republicans are playing football.

Gen-Z is playing three-dimensional chess.

And the Democrats are playing checkers. Yup, they think it’s easy, the game is not complicated, and if you do what you’ve always done before, you will win. Can you say Kerry? Can you say Hillary?

But forget the campaigning, it really comes down to just one thing…interference.

Did you see that corporations are now boycotting Facebook, trying to get Zuck to stand up to misinformation? The Republicans have learned the power of false facts and are doubling-down, seemingly every day a Trump fan sends me a manipulated video that they think is real. How do you fight that? The Democrats have no plan. The corporations are more savvy than the DNC!

As far as third party interlopers… The TikTokkers and K-Pop fans manipulated a presidential event, imagine what those with money and a sustained effort could do!

But you don’t really need money, it’s really about hearts and minds. And distribution is free on the internet. But you only gain acolytes if you burn yourself up, or you appeal to people’s insides to the point where they must forward your message. People want to believe, they’re looking for someone to believe in. And believe me, the younger generation doesn’t think it’s Biden, and neither do the protesters.

I’m just the messenger, sling your arrows all you want, that does not deny my point.

And my point is if anybody’s got control, it’s the younger generation, and the older generation doesn’t even understand the game.

And this tech savvy is what is employed to manipulate the vote. What did we hear about Georgia, the vote was so slow because the elderly poll workers couldn’t understand the new machines, didn’t have enough training? TikTok does not come with a manual. But somehow kids figure out everything without instruction. And they don’t bitch about the lack of tech help, because they know there is none, other than Google. And they’ve got all day to use these tools to their benefit. And tonight they did.

Oh, what a wonderful country!

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