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September Was a Wild Month on Social Media

October 22, 2023

Here’s what you missed on social media in September.

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TikTok is banned in Montana but TikTok has officially challenged the ban and they will be going to court soon!

Meta’s new smart glasses are WILD.

Elon Musk wants to charge all users a monthly fee to use the app formerly known as Twitter, now X.

All this, plus trends and other platform-specific updates coming your way in this month’s social media news update.

TikTok Ban Updates

As a quick refresher since the last we talked about this was in May, so far 34 of the 50 United States have banned TikTok from government devices, and Montana has signed a law that will ban the app completely from the state.

Montana’s state-wide ban will go into effect on January 1st.

However, legal battles have begun as TikTok, along with five content creators, are challenging the ban. Montana Attorney General, Austin Knudsen, believes it will withstand in federal court, but we will have to wait to find out as they’ve only just begun their first hearing this week.

So, stay tuned!

Social Media Violates the Constitution?

On Friday, September 29th, The Supreme Court agreed to decide whether state laws that seek to regulate social media platforms such as Facebook, TikTok, X and others violate the Constitution.

The announcement comes as the justices continue to grapple with how laws written at the dawn of the digital age (or earlier) apply to the ever-evolving online world.

Chris Marchese, the litigation director for the industry group NetChoice, said in a statement…

“Online services have a well-established First Amendment right to host, curate and share content as they see fit… The internet is a vital platform for free expression, and it must remain free from government censorship.”

Social media has been a hot topic this year in the government. That leaves us with the question: Is this new era of government regulation on the famously unregulated social media business warranted? Or is this just a phase? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below!

Will X Start Charging Users?

On September 18th during a live-streamed conversation between Elon Musk and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Musk suggested that X will eventually start charging a “small monthly payment” for all X users.

He stated that the fee would be meant to keep bots off X, adding, “It’s the only way I can think of to combat vast armies of bots.”

Musk never elaborated on what that payment would look like, but he said it would be a “small amount of money”.

X currently has a Premium Subscription service where users are charged for upgraded features, such as editing a post and having prioritized rankings in conversations and search. Pricing for that service starts at $8 a month.

My assumption is, that “small monthly payment” would be less than the $8/month Premium Subscription.

But what do you think? Will this help the bot problem? Or is it Just Elon being Elon?

Meta Announces New Ray-Ban Smart Glasses

On September 27th, Meta announced that they will be releasing Ray-Ban Meta Smart Glasses, which are available for pre-order now, ranging from $299 to $329.

Although Meta released smart glasses before, they say these new glasses were redesigned from the ground up with major improvements from the old design, plus completely new features never before seen on smart glasses.

Here are some highlights of these new smart glasses:

  • Improved audio that’s 50% louder for the user with 2x the bass, while maintaining privacy of those around you
  • Audio-recording as true to sound as possible
  • New, ultra-wide 12 MP camera allowing improved quality for photos and 1080p videos up to 60 seconds
  • Ability to directly share photos with friends and family from your glasses with a simple “send a photo” voice command
  • 36 hours of battery and comes with a charging case
  • Livestreaming capabilities from the glasses directly onto Facebook or Instagram. Plus access to see comments from your community as they come in to engage with your audience.

It’s official. We’re living in the future!

I’m tempted to buy these and make a video testing them out for you… let me know if you’d like to see that!

Hottest Trends of September

I usually add a “something good” section for every update post, but the “something good” is also trending hard right now.

So let’s just jump straight into all the hottest trends of September.

Travis Kelce and Taylor Swift

Late last month, Taylor Swift broke the internet as she appeared at the football game of her rumored boyfriend, Kansas City Chiefs’ tight end, Travis Kelce.

This moment went mega-viral. Viral to the point that ESPN talked more about Taylor Swift than actual sports. The NFL’s TikTok account had “Taylor was here” as their bio for a week. They even made a playlist on their TikTok called, “Welcome Swifties”.

This moment was so viral that it overshined Usher’s announcement saying he’s doing the half-time show at the Superbowl. Yea, did you even know that? Exactly. 

The moment sparked a ton of memes.

Most popularly, people are using old Taylor Swift music to create a compilation of Kelce dancing.

And of course, we also have to talk about “seemingly ranch”, which refers to a photo Swift took at the game that shows her plate of chicken fingers and dips, which a Taylor Swift fan account reported on it, saying she was dipping her chicken in “Ketchup and seemingly ranch”.

The post went viral with over 32 million views on the original post, with a lot of brands taking part in the joke.

While those are the highlights, there were still so many more viral moments that spawned from these two lovebirds. And you can be sure this will be a hot trend throughout all of October.

And I’m here for it.

Girl Math vs. Boy Math

The next trend from last month and still carrying into this month is Girl Math / Boy Math.

Girl Math and Boy Math are terms referring to jokes popularized on TikTok and X about how women and men fudge numbers.

For example, how women use wonky math to justify a purchase or how men overstate their height by rounding up.

The trend seemed to start in August when TikToker @samjamessssss posted a video discussing her creation of “Girl Math” after Girl Dinner (which is a whole other rabbit hole) was popularized on the app.

Her video joked about the mental gymnastics some women use to justify purchases, including “Anything under five dollars feels free” and “If you return an item for $50 and then spend $100 on another item, it’s like only spending $50.”

Shortly after the rise of “Girl Math,” several commenters, particularly on X, began hypothesizing about what “Boy Math” looks like. From lying about height to buying things in bulk, Boy Math is about getting the most bang for your buck, even if it means buying a superfluous amount of items.

The Tube Girl

TikTok has a new main character, and her name is Sabrina Bahsoon.

In September, Bahsoon started posting videos of her dancing and lip-syncing while traveling on the London Tube. The videos are immensely popular, due to the fact that most of us could never be this confident dancing in public.


And you guys really make it fun 😈@JuicyCoutureUk #tubegirl

♬ original sound – habz.fx

Everyone and their mother are now following this trend. Not the “dancing on the London Tube” part, but filming themselves dancing in this style while in public.


My heart was actually racing 😂😭

♬ original sound – habz.fx

Replying to @Coach it was easier with an empty tube but I made direct eye contact with an older man in the carriage in front of me so stopped immediately and ran off at the next stop. Day 3 ! #tubegirl #tubegirlenergy

♬ original sound – habz.fx

If you are looking to try some exposure therapy and film yourself in public, this might be the trend for you! Maybe even try walking around your house to test out fun transitions!

Justin Bieber Krispy Kreme Outfit

Justin and Hailey Bieber have recently spent some time in the meme-sphere due to the contrasting outfits they decided to wear to a promotional event at a Krispy Kreme in New York for her limited edition peptide lip treatment in strawberry glaze.

While Justin drew both criticism and support from fans for his ensemble, the best part has to be the memes that have sprung from these pictures.

Jwny / JosiahW / BACKGRID, Mpnc / MediaPunch / BACKGRID
Jwny / JosiahW / BACKGRID, Mpnc / MediaPunch / BACKGRID

Take these tweets as an example:

So, thank you the Biebers for inspiring our Halloween costumes this year!

Trending Music of September

As for trending music, there have been many many trending songs in September.

Most of those songs were Taylor Swift songs that sparked as a result of the Taylor and Kayce rumors that we discussed.

Aside from that, pretty much every song from Olivia Rodrigo’s new album, Guts, was trending like crazy in September and is still trending in October. So hop on it before the trends fade out!

Stay Up to Date With Weekly Trends

If you want to stay even more up-to-date with weekly recaps, as opposed to my monthly posts, then I have just the solution.

My video editors at Storyy have a weekly Trend Report newsletter where they will keep you in the loop of which memes and audios are trending. That way, you can use that information to strategize your content!

Seriously, it’s free so why wouldn’t you sign up?

Okay, now onto platform-specific updates (which you can also get with Storyy’s Trend Report).

Updates on Meta & Instagram

Meta Verified for Business

Meta has announced plans to extend its “Meta Verified” subscription bundle to businesses on Instagram, Facebook and, eventually, WhatsApp.

“Meta Verified” is a tool designed to help businesses distinguish themselves on these apps, increase their customer trust and confirm the authenticity of their enterprise. This service will initially be tested for businesses on Instagram and Facebook in selected countries, before being expanded to WhatsApp.

Businesses that choose to subscribe will receive several benefits. These entail:
• A verified badge
• Proactive impersonation monitoring
• Support in troubleshooting account issues
• Improved discoverability
• And for WhatsApp users, premium features like a customizable WhatsApp page and multi-device support for customer care

The monthly subscriptions start at $21.99 for individual Facebook or Instagram accounts and $34.99 for both. The service is designed to complement existing free and paid tools.

Instagram Expands Close Friends Capabilities to Feed Posts

Several users are noticing a new option when attempting to post pictures to their Instagram news feed.

A new feature allows users to choose between sharing their latest post with their entire following/public, or just with close friends they have already pre-designated.

This is almost reminiscent of when Instagram first introduced the feature for stories. The ability to restrict posts to close friends gives users an added layer of privacy, if desired when sharing recent updates.

As Social Media Today puts it, “It’s not a major change, and functionally, it’s not a big shift either. But it would provide another option to facilitate a more enclosed group discussion, which could help IG lean into the latest behavioral trends.”

Something that sticks out to me after looking at all of Instagram’s updates over the past few months, it seems that Instagram is updating its features to appeal to younger audiences (Gen Z and younger) to keep the platform alive as time goes on.

I’m paraphrasing here, but I remember Adam Mosseri, Head of Instagram, saying in a podcast that a lot of their updates aren’t for everybody. So it makes sense why people are torn about the recent updates. They’re to give users a choice in who their audience is.

And that’s mainly how younger generations use Instagram. They use it to message their friends and communicate in large group chats. So having functionalities in the app that replicate “Group Chat” features makes complete sense for their younger demographic.

Even if it upsets or doesn’t make sense to other demographics.

Updates on TikTok

TikTok Is Exploring a Partnership With Google

Last year, reports circulated that TikTok became the search engine of choice for many younger users and that it could, at some stage, take a large chunk of Google’s market share.

Well, Google may have found a way to counter that. Sort of.

TikTok and Google are “exploring” a new partnership. The partnership would include integrating Google search prompts and potentially even search results into TikTok’s search stream.

An app researcher, Radu Oncescu, posted what that feature looks like, which you can see in this tweet here.

This move definitely makes sense for Google. Google’s Senior Vice President, Prabhakar Raghavan notices TikTok’s emergence as a discovery tool and a potential business risk.

He has said, “In our studies, something like almost 40% of young people, when they’re looking for a place for lunch, they don’t go to Google Maps or Search. They go to TikTok or Instagram.”

Is this a good move for TikTok? What do you think?

Updates on YouTube

YouTube Has a New Video Editing App

At long last, YouTube announced that they’re releasing a brand new app called YouTube Create where you can edit video directly on your phone. It appears this app is intended to encourage more people to lean into creating more Shorts.

This is incredibly reminiscent of when TikTok released its own separate video-editing app, CapCut. It’s their approach to creating videos to primarily share on TikTok, along with other platforms. So YouTube is doing this for themselves.

YouTube said in a blog post, “The [YouTube Create] app offers video editing tools including precision editing and trimming, automatic captioning, voiceover capabilities and access to a library of filters, effects, transitions and royalty-free music with beat matching technology so that creators can produce their next YouTube video without relying on complex editing software.”

I find this very exciting! And you know I’m going to test it out and give you all the details. So stay tuned!

What news are you most excited about? Did I miss any stories from September?  Drop them in the comments below!

And before you dash off, don’t forget to sign yourselves up for Storyy’s weekly Trend Report. You definitely don’t want to miss what we have lined up for you next.

Follow your joy!

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