Us, Them, Right, Wrong: How TikTok's Green Screen, Duet, and Stitch help shape political discourse




Social Media, TikTok, Politics, New Media, Affordances


As TikTok exploded in popularity following the initial lockdowns of the COVID-19 pandemic in March 2020, use from individual users skyrocketed. During this time, political content became largely ubiquitous across the app. Politics play out daily on TikTok, as individuals craft messages within the technological affordances and sociocultural dynamics of the app. This study expands on research regarding civic engagement in digital public spheres by examining and describing how TikTok shapes political expression and discourse through three technological affordances on the app: the Green Screen, the Stitch, and the Duet. While these affordances are often hailed as features that bolster user creativity through increased possible interactions, our analysis found these increased possible interactions to be highly specific, and also limited in conjunction with politics. On political TikTok, these affordances function more as political commentary than conversation, lending to an overall volatile environment.




How to Cite

Mackenzie Quick, & Jessica Maddox. (2024). Us, Them, Right, Wrong: How TikTok’s Green Screen, Duet, and Stitch help shape political discourse. First Monday, 29(3).