The Secret Behind Social Media Trends

According to The Blaze, about 6 million gallons of water was used for the Ice Bucket challenge.(Provided by

Sydney Chang, Opinions Editor

Hashtag “throwbackthursday.” Hashtag “LegGun.” Social networking websites, such as Twitter and Facebook, are brimming with news and new trends. The “Trending” section is constantly changing and updating with more dumb (oh, excuse me) things people like to do. Remember when “YOLO” (although it’s still used today) was basically everywhere during that one time period? Remember when Harlem Shake remake videos were rampant among netizens? Oh! Oh! Let’s not forget that time teenage girls practically worshipped “#AlexfromTarget.”

Some of these social media trends spread like wildfire. And the big question is: Why?

First of all, let me just say that some people have the “I’m-desperate-and-want-to-fit-in” disease. Our society has become so focused on collective action and congregation. Conformity is almost like a disease that spreads among people groups. It’s all about “fitting in” and doing what other people think is fun instead of going out to find out about activities they personally feel is fun.

When the Ice Bucket Challenge in support of ALS (also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease) spread on the Internet, probably half of the people had no idea what they were raising awareness for when they shrieked from ice-cold water running down on their faces. Posting these videos to raise awareness was effective. But eventually, so many of them were being posted that soon, it just became a “Hey, I nominated you to do it. So you have to do it” type of thing. (According to BBC news, 2.4 million Ice Bucket challenge videos were posted on Facebook while 3.7 million onto Instagram). But this is not all.

Sometimes, as an avid user of websites such as Tumblr and Instagram, I feel like people want, actually CRAVE, attention.

Technological advances today are great and so…well…advanced. News spread faster than they ever have because of social media and the Internet. Online search engines, such as Google and Bing, provide accessibility to all Web users while hand-held devices offer convenience to. However, this becomes a good chance for people to post videos and evidently abuse the Web system.

The Kylie Jenner challenge recently swept the Web and I am still shocked that people obsess and focus so much on the Kardashians. But I was even more shocked when I found out people were conducting experiments to enlarge their lips like those of Kylie Jenner.

Why on earth would people want to suck on a glass jar for several minutes and patiently wait for their lips to swell up? I have no idea who posted the first challenge but it worked since whoever started it garnered attention.

For most people, the experiment was an epic fail. These people had to deal with puffy lips and commentary from social website users from all over the world. So many people got injured and looked so bad that people were questioning, “Was the attention really worth it?”

Now, I’m not bashing ALL who participate in these fun (yet unusual) social media trends that spread to all age groups. It’s just that certain people who interact with the Web make ignorant decisions.

Technology is changing; therefore, social media trends are changing. They are unpredictable but everyone should know that things will get stranger yet better. Let us all embrace the craziest trends in social media and reminisce these way later in year 2100 or so.