Rule Number One: In 2020, he who controls the internet controls pretty much everything. Rule Number Two: Do not piss off the Zoomers (otherwise known as Gen Z, born between the mid-to-late ’90s and the early 2010s).
The Dallas Police Department found this out when they put out a notice of their iWatch report on Twitter, reports Vulture. The tweet reads, Vulture says, “If you have video of illegal activity from the protests and are trying to share it with @DallasPD, you can download it to our iWatch Dallas app,” and goes on to assure people they can remain anonymous. Then a K-pop (Korean pop) stan (serious fan) had a brilliant idea:
guys download the app and fucking FLOOD that shit with fancams make it SO HARD for them to find anything besides our faves dancing https://t.co/zqjVHLWnZG
— ً (@YGSHlT) May 31, 2020
They crashed the Dallas police department’s app in mere hours because of “technical difficulties.” Newsweek adds that much the same thing happened to Philadelphia; Kirkland, Washington; and Grand Rapids: police cams and twitter hashtags were flooded with pics and videos of K-pop icons BTS.
I’ll say it again: do not mess with Zoomers.
There’s This Thing Called TikTok?
Okay, so on TikTok, users upload short videos of themselves. You can “like” a video, and TikTok curates your feed for you; you can also search for hashtags. There’s evidence that TikTok users may currently be shutting down Donald Trump merchandise stores as I’m writing this, according to Verge (it’s unclear whether this is working or not). A lot of the activism is taking place under the hashtag #blacklivesmatter. Videos under this hashtag will also make you f*cking cry, so fair warning: little girls holding signs that say: “They kill our fathers then make fun of us for not having any”; tiny Black girls saying, “I’m ugly,” and crying; police harassment.
Because of the use of hashtags, TikTok’s 15 second videos have become a tool for activism. It played a major role, along with K-pop fans (we’ll get there) in ruining Trump’s Tulsa rally, says Vanity Fair. Vanessa Pappas, general manager of TikTok US, told CNN that, “TikTok is an outlet for users to express themselves… our community is going through a time of particularly deep anguish and outrage, and much of the content on the app… clearly reflects those experiences.”
Over 30% of TikTok users are clearly Zoomers: they’re adolescents, according to Mediakix. 63.5% are 10-24 years old: also clearly Zoomers. Most of the people on TikTok, to quote Hamilton (which they grew up on) are “young, scrappy and hungry.”
And they are not throwing away their shot.
K-Pop Zoomers Punked White Supremacists… Hardcore.
First, the hashtag #WhiteLivesMatter started trending on Twitter just after the K-pop fans took down the police cameras. The mostly BTS stans got to work flooding the hashtags with pics of their favorite stars, says the BBC. Then they got to work on #AllLivesMatter. Vulture adds that they destroyed #whiteoutwednesday and #BlueLivesMatter, too.
What’s this all do?
Well, if you’re a scum-sucking racist whose moral dipstick is about two drops short of bone-dry and click on one these hashtags, you don’t get like-minded tweets from your fellow jerkbags. No. You get K-pop. You get lots, and lots, and lots of K-pop. You can’t engage with other racists. You can’t talk to other racists. You can’t have your own little racist social movement, because you have been stymied by Zoomer K-pop stans. The Zoomers have banded together. They’ve shown their ability to engage in collective action.
You people had better be very, very afraid.
The Zoomers are coming for you. And they aren’t happy.
Then There Was the Tulsa Rally…
Trump planned a massive rally in Tulsa, Oklahoma for June 20th. The Guardian reports that Trump claimed one million tickets to the rally were requested. It was supposed to be massive. It was supposed to be epic. It was supposed to kick off his presidential campaign.
Except the Zoomers punked him.
According to The Guardian, one tweet was all it took. That tweet told the world that Trump’s people were offering free registration online and via cell phone. It went viral on TikTok, and Trump was what we like to politely called screwed, and impolitely call something that begins with an f. K-pop fans on Twitter and activists on AltTikTok banded together and used Tulsa area codes to request tickets to the event. They posted screenshots of the requests they didn’t plan on using. Personally, I know at least three teens who pulled the trick. While the Trump campaign crowed of the rally’s certain success, they ended up playing to an empty audience.
Zoomers for the win.
But It’s Not Just Politics The Zoomers Are Coming For…
There’s more to Zoomers than Black Lives Matter. Climate change is also a huge issue for them, and they have activists like Greta Thunberg to rally behind, an internationally known 17-year-old climate activist whose views are quoted on CNN. Lately, she’s said that the coronavirus shows that the world is capable of acting “with necessary force” when faced with a global emergency, which she considers climate change to be (as do most other Zoomers).
In Australia, “hundreds of thousands” of students walked out of school at the end of November to protest climate change during the wildfires raging across their country, according to the BBC.
If you’re not with them, you’re against them. So you better get with them now. Because they’re organized. They’re capable of collective action. They’re super tech-savvy. And the Zoomers are really, really pissed about how you’ve screwed up for a very, very, very long time.
They’re ready to take their world back.
You better be ready to give it to them.