As social media becomes increasingly popular, this year TikTok has managed to beat Google to the #1 spot on Cloudflare’s annual rankings.

The social video app went from #7 in the rankings in 2020 all the way to #1, overtaking the likes of Google, Facebook, Microsoft, Apple, Netflix, and Amazon. Many people are linking this huge rise in popularity to COVID-19 lockdowns, where people are constantly looking towards their phones for entertainment and socialisation.

TikTok and their security concerns

TikTok is owned by the Chinese company ByteDance, and if you may recall the app recently came under scrutiny for privacy concerns, including data mining, with Trump threatening to ban the app in the United States, but this still hasn’t caused much of a downfall in its popularity. Additionally, TikTok was banned in India over national security issues in June of 2020. India used to be TikTok’s top global market, which makes TikTok’s #1 ranking even more impressive and highlights their utter dominance in today’s online world.

My thoughts…

TikTok is rapidly becoming a significant part of the modern world, providing users with a seemingly endless stream of videos from cultural fascination to memes, music and even food recipes. When I’m out and about everyone around me seems to be staring at their phones when unoccupied, scrolling through social media. It provides people with a ceaseless capability of being able to entertain themselves or learn new things at their fingertips when filled with a sense of boredom. I believe that this powerful capability is what makes TikTok such a popular website.

What I fear is that one day social media will deprive us from boredom, which may sound strange to you. But in fact boredom isn’t a bad thing. Boredom leads to exploration, adventure and innovation, and as the philosopher Bertrand Russell once said, ‘A generation that cannot endure boredom will be a generation of little men, of men unduly divorced from the slow processes of nature, of men in whom every vital impulse slowly withers, as though they were cut flowers in a vase.’

The full list of the most popular websites on the internet from Cloudflare is below:

Rankings (2021)Website
Cloudflare said it tracks data using its tool Cloudflare Radar, which monitors web traffic.

Marco Gava