Much to the chagrin of my slightly younger self, I have started using TikTok. Yes, the app that I have widely deemed as the most vile for consuming social media has charmed me into creating short form video content.

Earlier today, I opened up the app and found the “Suggested accounts” pop-up. There was a single name on the list, and after a bit of googling, I found out it was a friend from college. I had ensured that my account, just like on all other social media apps, was not connected to anything that could be traced back to people I know. But, alas.

I think it’s common to feel embarrassed when someone you know finds out about your “content creation” platform. To an extent, it feels like stripping down in front of a partner for the first time—except it’s in front of an X number of people that you know (but not really) and with whom you have no desire of sharing an intimate facet of yourself. It’s common to feel this at first, yet I have felt this way for years.

There’s something about others witnessing some part of my identity—whether it’s from attending the same school or simply knowing them on a personal level—that immediately makes their opinion of myself weigh more than a rando online.

I’ve gone to the extent of deactivating personal accounts to prevent them from being further traced back my content creation platforms. It’s as if I’ve had to remove parts of my personal footprints online in order to make space for my online persona.

At one point, l quit all social media platforms but YouTube (which has never impeached on my anonymity, for that matter) because it felt like I was working towards becoming a walking ad for companies. I was convinced that I was doing it for the ethics, but it was mostly just a very personal matter of anonymity.

With the boom of the Web3, we can already see social media transforming into something more autonomous for the individual content creator. There will come a time where creators can monetize their content without depending on ads or middlemen, and I’m excited for that. It won’t be anonymous as all online activity is traceable, but at least I won’t have to worry about the platform spreading informing across my online selves.

I think it’s fine to want to stay anonymous. Lots of people do it for reasons beyond that of just embarrassment. But I think it’s something else when I freak out over a minor incident that causes me exactly zero harm. I still cringe at any of my old content; some days it’s fine, some days I wish I could start all over.

I am inclined to end this post on a high note, but evidently this is not something that I can resolve over the course of a few paragraphs.

3 Comments

  1. Hey, when i was a little younger i used to watch your videos quite alot, adopting the minimalist lifestyle and advice. I would watch your videos when i wanted to get my life in order again when i was starting to not take care of myself, feel sad again and get unhealthy habits. I was sad to see that your videos are gone but i feel like its a sign for me to take responsibility of getting my life in order again rather than relying on some videos. Although i would like to see your videos again, i deeply resonate with your decision, they have been a part of me for a long time so i can remember them. Im glad i found your channel which has taught me and brought alot of comfort when i was in a dark place. I particularly liked ‘minimalistic habits’ but we as people grow often and we move out of phases in our lives so i hope you are doing well <3. I dont usually reach out to youtubers but i wanted to tell your impact on my life (i dont know if youll see this ahaha) but again i hope you take a good break and if you arent coming back to yt thank you for your videos 🙂

  2. hey want to say that I miss you so much i really appreciate if you will come back, you are my favorite YouTuber

    since your videos are a comfort for my chaotic life

  3. i suddenly remembered that one of my favorite youtubers was not posting anymore and i specially went to check your channel just to see it has been more than 5 months. I understand how you feel. i could always relate to you. i am glad you have TikTok. unfortunately i don’t use that app so i can’t see you everyday. i hope to see you soon on YT in the future. till then take care