People were no doubt surprised when the campaign rally held by President Trump on June 20th had a far smaller turnout than originally expected. Last week, the President's 2020 campaign manager, Brad Parscale, tweeted: "Just passed 800,000 tickets. Biggest data haul and rally signup of all time by 10x…", but when the day of the rally came, the president spoke to a half-empty arena and made no use of the outdoor area which had been prepared in case of an overflow of attendees. So what exactly happened? The answer, could in part, be found on the popular app "TikTok".
Various opinions surrounding the occurrence of the President's first campaign rally have been flooding every social media site imaginable. While some users are arguing that the arena could become a Covid-19 hotspot and potentially endanger attendees and those they will later interact with, some still believe the virus to be non-threatening and expressed their support for those choosing to sign a waiver in order to attend this large gathering.
This video, originally posted to "TikTok" by user "maryjolaupp" over a week ago has received over 705,000 heart-reacts. In her video, the user encourages viewers to go reserve all of the tickets to the President's rally, and then not attend, leaving the stadium very empty. This video quickly went viral, and when the rally was held, not even half of the estimated 800,000 people showed up, leading everyone to believe that this social media platform, popular among Gen Z or "Zoomers", had something to do with it.
Generation Z is widely considered to be comprised of people who were born between the years 1995 and 2015, making the older members of the generation the youngest voters. This age of social media and large consumption of information could play a major role in future elections as more and more of this generation comes of age and registers to vote. Is this event a sign of what is to come? Probably.
It is now easier than ever to consume and share information right in the palm of our hands. Young voters have more access to information that will affect their decisions than any of the generations that voted before them. Considering that this generation was able to use social media to create a significant drop in the attendees of the president's rally, it is safe to say that their voice will be heard in this upcoming election.
As members of Gen Z are becoming adults with their own voices and opinions, things are starting to change. Reserving tickets in order to purposefully reduce the turnout of this rally is a good indicator of the President's approval rating among his younger constituents. So what does that mean for this upcoming election? Only time will tell, but if this generation can learn to work together in a similar fashion, it is highly likely that they will have significant influence over this next election, finally proving to the world that they are ready to take on adult life by making their voices heard.