In which I fight evil

It was a good day. It was a stressful day– I was fully expecting someone to die somewhere because of the inauguration, and I may have more thoughts on it later. But it appears that everything went off without any violence, and the right-wing goon squad seems to have dried up and blown away without the Asshole encouraging them on Twitter. Hopefully it will stay that way.

I had a Thing happen, though, unrelated to the inauguration, and if you don’t mind I’m just going to embed a bunch of Tweets because I’d tell the story the same way here anyway.

(These appear to have embedded obnoxiously, which I apologize for, but hopefully a single click will take you straight to Twitter, where you can read these and view the images in native format.)

What particularly annoys me about this is that when I’m daydreaming about winning the lottery, the specific way in which I fantasize about being ultra-rich is that I want to set up a charitable foundation, and part of the way I want to use the funds for my charitable foundation is by flitting around the Internet and randomly and anonymously completely fulfilling people who post GoFundMes and various and sundry other “I’m getting evicted, please send me money” types of things. And I can imagine a world where I might actually just do a Twitter search for “credit card debt,” and then ask for Venmo addresses so I can send folks money. So I decided to take this seriously until it proved to be a scam (which was what I expected) or I somehow got $3K from the money fairy on Joe Biden’s Inauguration Day, which trust me, was about to be taken as an omen.

Instead, hopefully I got to ruin a scammer’s day. I mean, probably not, but I hope at least BoA zaps that account and Twitter bans Annette. Either way, all in a day’s work, I guess.

Scam alert update

It has been pointed out to me that the suspect checkout interface I pointed out yesterday is apparently the base checkout screen for the Shopify platform, and I had a couple of people show me legit websites that they’ve used repeatedly that use that platform. I’m going to slightly back off and modify my claim from yesterday, from a flat “avoid” to a “back out and do some research.” I’m also going to echo Elisabeth’s comment from yesterday that another thing these shitty sites have in common is Facebook and Instagram ads. You’re probably all familiar with this phenomenon; you click on one ad, sometimes by accident, or sometimes just linger over one too long and suddenly you have ads featuring the exact same pictures from several different sites.

I have a policy now; if I recognize a photo of a piece of merchandise from another ad, I start reporting every single ad where I see that photo as a scam. I have threatened to do this before and not followed through, but I’m closer than I’ve ever been to shutting down both Facebook and Instagram for good. I have here, TikTok and Twitter; that really ought to be enough social media for everyone.

Not much else going on today, but I thought I’d point all that out.

In which it’s official

… my stupid viral TikTok video that I shot a few weeks ago is now My Most Viral Thing Ever. The ZIP Code tweet has been viewed 6.2 million times and has been interacted with about a hundred and fifteen thousand times. The video is now up to 6.4 million views, with 276,000 Likes, 1600 comments (most of which are annoying) and 860 shares.

I have 11,000 followers on Twitter and 3300 on TikTok. It’s been fascinating to see just how much more interaction I get over there than I do on Twitter, despite the substantial difference in follower numbers. Also, entertainingly, I now have more followers than any of my students.

In which I apologize in advance

It’s happening again, somehow– my first viral video on TikTok is now up to 3.7 million views and really hasn’t slowed down all that much, and I woke up this morning to discover that one I posted last night had amassed 130K views overnight and has tacked on another hundred thousand in the 10 hours I’ve been awake.. The first video got me from around 50 to just under a thousand followers; this one has taken me from 900+ to 2100 in less than a day.

I am apparently at least a little good at this.

I still have over five times the following on Twitter that I have on the TT account, but TikTok gets massively more engagement than Twitter does. It’s kind of shocking how much of a difference there is given that TT doesn’t have any sort of “retweet” type of function.

(I know I’m still kind of being a dick by not posting my address on here, for those of you who care. It’s because it’s under my real name, and I’m still trying to avoid crossing the streams, so to speak. If you’re curious, email me or drop a comment and I’ll let you know individually.)

I can’t even imagine what it must be like to be somebody who gets this kind of engagement on every single post. I was just starting to break away from constantly checking my notifications inside the app like a rat in a Skinner box looking for a heroin fix, and now it’s started all over again. I assume that once it starts happening all the time you get over it, but it’s nuts how constant the new notifications are. There have been sixteen while I’ve been writing this, for example, and I write fast, and they’ve started to slow down because everything always slows down around this time of day. If this behaves like the other one, in an hour or so I will be able to clear my notifications, then reload and immediately have new ones, and I’ll be able to do that constantly. It’s nuts.

Still looking for a way to monetize this. At some point in the last 24 hours they decided I was important enough to unlock live-streaming on the app, which is terrifying and I’m not going to do it. If I get another 98,000 followers I can join the Creator Fund, but I gotta figure that’s still a ways off, right?

right?

Yes. Definitely.

In which I complain about my good fortune

I am, technically, monitoring my classes while I’m typing this right now; it’s just that today’s assignment fell apart due to an utterly inexplicable block on a web service that was kiiinda essential to my kids being able to do what I wanted them to do today. Were I in a regular classroom I could photocopy a worksheet or some shit, or quickly rework, but when I don’t quite realize how widespread the problem is until half of my kids have already checked in and back out for the day there’s not much I can do to get them back.

So! Turns out this is going to be an easier day than I expected, if a somewhat more frustrating one, and the hidden good news is that I was testing something that I need for tomorrow and it’s very very good that I figured this out early! This is actually exactly why we test things. Today is shot, but they’re actually expecting us to administer standardized tests remotely this week, so tomorrow will be much more functional now that I know how This Thing is going to work. So … yay?


I talked about this a bit earlier this week, but I may as well talk about it some more, since it’s still going on: my viral TikTok video is now up to 2.1 million views, 124,800 Likes and 753 comments, and I am officially in the stage of Having Created a Viral Thing where I am completely fuckin’ over it. On Twitter you can simply mute a post or a thread when this happens, but you can’t do that on TikTok. My stupid, stupid rat brain keeps going back and checking the post like my phone is a Skinner box, and also much like a Skinner box the number of times I have to hit reload for the dopamine hit is getting higher and higher.

Plus, Jesus, the video is literally two sentences long and there are three sentences of text on the screen, and the number of people who think they’re being clever in comments who clearly didn’t manage to read like twelve words is beginning to aggravate. There’s also a weird subgroup of people who are coming in and insisting that the word פיצה, which is an English cognate because it’s an Italian word to begin with, doesn’t mean “pizza.”

Which … yeah, it does, and why are you like this? I literally looked up a couple of Israeli pizza joint’s websites and posted them in response to one of these comments yesterday. Go argue with them, dude.

I’ve also picked up about 600 new followers, and the number of straight-up children who have access to that app is kind of shocking. I’m going to start blocking anyone who appears to be nine years old and follows me, because … just … nah.

(And I recognize that I’m kind of being a dick by talking about the video and not linking to it, but remember, the account is under my actual name. If you want to see it, email me or something and if you’ve been around long enough that I recognize your name I’ll send you the link.)