TikTok’s ‘corecore’ is the latest version of absurdist meme art • TechCrunch

TikTok goes a bit overboard when it comes to categorizing every eventual aesthetic into its own micro-trend. You notice it when Spotify Packages call your music taste leprechaunor when you weirdly end up at a charity gala in San Francisco and a tech executive asks you if he should worry that his teenage daughter is obsessed with cottage core (yes, this happened to me). Take any noun, add the suffix “core” and you’re ready to go.

There is no more natural endpoint to this phenomenon than “corecore”, a meta-esthetic from “nichetok” uses nihilistic video clips to create something so silly and meaningless that it somehow turns around and makes you feel something. It relies on our impulses to hide all our emotions in twelve layers of irony, but in the process, it becomes so serious that it may eventually cease to be ironic.

Take a look at supposedly most popular core video, which garnered 2.2 million likes. It started with a clip from the salary transparency account, in which people asked strangers what they do and how much money they make. One kid said that when he grew up he wanted to be a doctor, and when the host asked him how much money he wanted to make, he said, “I’ll do…everyone feels good.” Then you’re immediately exposed to fast-paced cycling clips: time-lapse on a busy street; a guy screaming; old people play slot machines in casinos; a TikToker about a chicken that lives in the metaverse; and people rush out of garages in a panic.

Some core video look like they could come out of a Overwhelme documentaries that tell us the obvious truth about how lonely social media makes us; is different make little sense at all. But most of these videos are tied together by a common malaise – the concern that life has no meaning and technology is keeping us apart. In corecore, we see clips of robots at CES talking about how scared people are of them, demos of new VR headsets, and clips of Elon Musk’s appearance on Joe Rogan’s podcast. This company’s lack of confidence in technological innovation stands in stark contrast to “day a life as one technology staff“the trend is, surprisingly, not top-down the company propagate psyop (…or it is).

Corecore has been popular on TikTok since late 2022, but the current tech-future-doom vibes are especially relevant, as we watch Microsoft, Google, meta, Amazon and Sales force All wages were laid off in mass within a few weeks. These niche posters are perhaps not in response to the state of tech employment, but to something larger that pervades it: how we are all subject to the whims of some. . billionaire Tech guys might decide to buy Twitter or turn “metaverse” into a word that ordinary people think of. And of course, there’s the additional irony that corecore is also part of that ecosystem — that people are creating TikTok accounts dedicated to creating their own corecore compilations, promising things like ” reveal” after they hit 10,000 followers, using an anti-capitalist, lonely aesthetic to gain social capital.

Corecore isn’t the first meme of its kind. In any given moment in internet culture, there’s usually some sort of absurdist meme circulating, whether it’s core, deep fried meme, Strange Facebook, bad animation videoor repeat above thut.jpg. That’s because at this point it’s very commonplace, almost cliché, to create meaningless works of art in response to a seemingly meaningless world. As anyone who’s taken an introductory art history class knows, here’s how Dadaist artists responded to the tragedies of World War I — and now, that’s how contemporary meme-makers are reacting. responding to the appalling realization that we are all addicted to scrolling through short-form videos. And that’s how the greatest minds of the weird Internet world will react the next time the world feels a little out of date.

In the end, the only thing that really matters about corecore is its existence.

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