The Lacking Perspective of “Friends of Friends are Strangers
When I hear the word “hackers,” I feel strangely nostalgic.
The term “bakkatsu” refers to the act of exposing one’s own crimes, frauds, lies, anti-social behavior, etc. on Twitter as if it were a “saga,” and was the fourth place winner of the “Internet Buzzword Award 2013.
Eight years have passed since then, and it is said that young people no longer use Twitter much. Is this really so?
Looking at a familiar example, many of the 20-year-olds around my daughter used Twitter until high school and made their Instagram debut in college. Moreover, the ones who had interesting Twitter posts, buzz, and a very high number of posts during their high school years were the self-proclaimed (?) In high school, the ones who posted the most interesting content on Twitter and had the highest number of posts were the self-proclaimed “yinka” students who had passed the entrance exams to top universities such as Tokyo University and Kyoto University. I even have the impression that the “hackers” are no longer “hackers” but rather “intellectual hackers” and middle-aged people.
However, I heard that the so-called “hackers” are now on Instagram, and are undergoing further changes from there. We asked IT journalist Hiroshi Mikami what kind of changes are taking place.
“In 2013, hackers posted inappropriate images on Twitter, but from January to March 2019, they started posting inappropriate videos on Instagram stories. This is the so-called “part-time terrorism.
However, recently, the trend of “bite terrorism” by posting on Instagram has become different from the past, and I talked about it as “bacastagram” in a program.
Nowadays, the fear of Twitter flames is taught in school literacy classes, so posting on Twitter has indeed disappeared, and it was in 2019 that I moved to Instagram stories. In 2019, they moved to Instagram stories, which are 15-second videos that disappear in 24 hours and are only available to their own followers (in the default settings).
“The content has not changed between 2013 and 2019, although there has been a shift from Twitter to Instagram and from images to videos.
In 2013, junior and senior high school students had only 20 to 30 followers on Twitter, and since only their relatives usually see what they say, they mistakenly thought it was completely theirs and posted the saga.
2019 In the year 2019, if it’s an Instagram story, it’s because of the psychology of wanting to post a video that will be popular among your friends, even if it’s still an intimate one.
However, what’s missing there is the “friends of friends are strangers” perspective.
Inappropriate images and videos are unlikely to be flamed by a friend, but if a friend shows another friend that there was such a terrible image (or video), then that person will show another friend. From there, they post it on Twitter, and it goes up in flames.
However, there are not that many active Twitter users who look at the site every day, and even if a flame does occur, it is only a small number of flames, with thousands or tens of thousands of participants per incident.
This is then picked up by bulletin boards such as 5chan and summary sites, and boosted by the phrase ’00 (store name) part-time terrorism,’ it is picked up by news sites and TV, and becomes a huge flame.
Gossipy YouTubers, not summary sites, are the current boosters.
However, in 2021, “part-time terrorism” has taken a different form. One of its features is that it is posted to stories that are “locked” (i.e., closed to all but followers).
One of the features of the story is that it is posted on a “locked” story, which means it is closed to all followers.
Furthermore, many of the recent flare-ups originated from listeners posting at famous YouTubers. In other words, this time the boosters are not summary sites, but gossipy YouTubers.
Incidentally, Mikami gives a lecture on social networking to a class of 100 students at a university, and when he surveyed the students about Instagram, he found that more than half of them use multiple accounts.
When I surveyed the students about Instagram, I found that more than half of them used multiple accounts, just like Twitter in the past, switching between “school” and “private” accounts, or “fan” accounts for artists, etc. This shows that they want to post about their private lives as well.
“When we asked these 100 students how often they post on Instagram, 42% of them said that they don’t post on Instagram, they just look at it, and another 42% said that they only post a few times a month.
But similarly, when asked about posting to Instagram stories, many respondents (about 44%) said they ‘post about once a week. In other words, there is a sense of ‘I want to post for my friends on stories’ as much or more than regular Instagram posts.”
What is it that makes people want to show their posts, which disappear in 24 hours, only to people they know?
“It’s a very delicate balance, and I don’t really want to be famous all over Japan.
I don’t really want to be famous among people all over Japan, but I do want people around me to recognize what I do and how I feel about it, and say things like, ‘That was hard work,’ or ‘That looks delicious,’ or ‘I like your haircut.
Facebook is completely for middle-aged and older people, and Mixi is being reexamined in terms of segmentation.
Incidentally, it is often thought that young people have shifted from Twitter to Instagram, but according to the aforementioned survey of 100 university students, 9% of them did not have an Instagram account, while 3.7% of them did not use Twitter. In other words, more than 90% of people on both Twitter and Instagram have an account, according to the survey.
“Incidentally, when asked how many Twitter accounts they had, 28% had only one, 28% had two, 28% had three or four, and more than 10% had five or more. In contrast, only two people looked at Facebook at least once a week.”
It is said that Facebook is completely for middle-aged and older people, but was that really the case at ……?
“In Japan, Facebook has always been perceived as a culture where aunts and uncles “like” each other, so young people didn’t use it.
Even so, until a few years ago, Facebook was considered ‘necessary’ for finding a job, including visiting alumni, but this is no longer the case. This trend is not only in Japan, but also in English-speaking countries, where data shows that young people are moving away from Facebook.
Facebook was created as a student communication tool when Zuckerberg was a university student, so it was originally used by university students. 15 years have passed since then, and the age group has probably increased. In Japan, I think people started using Facebook in the early 2010s, so I think the age of people has increased.
On the other hand, it is interesting to note that Mixi, which was said to be completely out of fashion, is still thriving in certain genres. Mr. Mikami explains this trend as follows.
“In the case of Mixi users, it seems that most of them have been using it since the Mixi boom 17 or 18 years ago. The genres that are particularly popular are license-free radio (a hobby that requires no license to communicate) and information exchange on specific diseases.
Actually, Mixi is the only service that has rooms for each genre within a closed area with fixed accounts. So it’s also a place where people who are troubled by the fact that they don’t have anyone around them with the same commonalities, such as sexual minorities, people with core hobbies, and people suffering from rare diseases, can find friends who share the same feelings as they do.
It used to be that Mixi was followed by Twitter, and Twitter was followed by Instagram, and so on, rising and falling, and new things seemed to be overriding the old. However, looking at the recent trends, I feel that each social networking service is becoming more fragmented and is changing into an image that will remain intact.
While it is difficult to meet people in real life due to the corona disaster, the way of “places” on SNS may become more and more fragmented in the future, depending on the kind of friends and hobbies you are looking for, the content you want to transmit, and your style.
Hiroshi Mikami is an IT journalist. Part-time lecturer at Bunkyo University’s Faculty of Information Studies (SNS culture theory/internet flames). Specializes in security, Internet incidents, and smartphones. In addition to writing security articles for the general public on the web, he has also provided commentary on TV and radio. Also appears on “UstToday,” a live media information program full of the latest IT information (broadcast every Monday at 9pm).
Interviewed and written by： Wakako Tago
Born in 1973. After working for a publishing company and an advertising production company, she became a freelance writer. In addition to interviewing actors and actresses for weekly and monthly magazines, she writes drama columns for various media. JUMP 9 no Tobira ga Openitoki" (both published by Earl's Publishing).