Kialia Pinellas was mystified when her teenage daughter started acting like a giddy groupie while they were shopping at a mall outside Orlando, Fla.
“She was just going crazy,” says Pinellas. “I have never seen her react that way.”
It turned out her 14-year-old daughter Khaloni Crowell had recognized a clothing-store clerk as “Dhatboiitre,” a young TikTok personality who posts prank, lip sync and comedy videos for his 1.1 million followers.
Pinellas, who is 42, isn’t among them. Though a regular at the shop, she had no idea she had been buying sports jerseys from a social-media star until then.
An entertainment gulf has long existed between adults and their children. Stars and shows that attract kids can repel parents. It happened with Mötley Crüe, “Beavis and Butt-Head,” “South Park”—even Elvis.
Today, though, the way we consume media has widened that chasm. Not long ago, a single TV blasted from the living room. Parents didn’t always enjoy what their children watched, but at least they were exposed to it.
Generations now inhabit separate digital worlds, consuming separate servings of entertainment. Parents often still favor TV and movies while younger viewers skew toward social media and the “content creators that keep it all moving,” said a Deloitte report (emphasis added).