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The Student News Site of Lindale High School

Eagle Eye News

The Student News Site of Lindale High School

Eagle Eye News

TikTok Terror

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Jaxson Gauntt
Jaxson and friends at church.

He lays in bed, staring up at the ceiling, wondering how he will pass the slowly moving time. The year is 2020, and he has been at home in quarantine for nearly a month. He opens up TikTok and begins scrolling; he chooses a random sound and records a TikTok, laughing as he taps post. Before he knew it, junior Jaxon Gauntt has gained a following on TikTok and a new joy for life.

 

“I started making TikToks during COVID and I just kept making them after,” Gauntt said. “I got really bored over Quarantine and I decided that it would be really fun to start making videos. Once I started making them I really enjoyed it and I just kept it up.”

 

Gauntt did not begin his rise to fame through TikTok. He used apps, such as Zoomerang, Instagram and Youtube when he was younger to build a platform and name for himself. 

 

“I posted on an app called Zoomerang before I started posting on Tiktok,” said Gauntt. “I actually had more followers on there and a lot of them ended up following me on TikTok, but it’s not an app I use anymore.”

 

Gauntt posts a multitude of different videos on his page, usually showcasing his friends and family. Through doing this, he has built up a major following online. 

 

“I post a variety of content; sometimes it’s vlogs or just what i’m doing throughout the day or dances and trends,” Gauntt said. “I had around 158 thousand followers and most of my videos received a lot of attention but it varies.” 

 

One of Gauntt’s most popular TikToks involves him performing a song in ASL. The video helped to his boost his account and reach a record number of followers. This was initially an end of year project for his ASL class. 

 

“My teacher actually loved my song so much that she had me perform it for a different class,” Gauntt said. “They ended up videoing it and I made it into a TikTok. It ended up receiving around 21 million views and 4 million likes.” 

 

Gauntt has received a multitude of brand deals and features on different media thanks to the ASL videos and many others. Due to the amount he has received, he has to pick the ones of best quality that he’s interested in.  

 

“I’ve gotten probably around like 100 people asking for me to do stuff for them,” Gauntt said. “I have done a couple tee shirt brand deals, like the Seek Jesus company and the Southern and Faithful company. One of my favorites has been the Pluto Case, which is a phone case that sticks to walls and makes filming vides so much easier.

 

After all of this gain, and many other popular videos, Gauntt was hacked a few months later. A fake verification email tricked him and gained all his information easily.

 

“I logged into TikTok on my phone and right after I received an email asking to verify my account,” Gauntt said. “I started putting everything in and it looked really normal but when I tried to log back in it wouldn’t let me. That’s when I received another email saying I had to pay to get my account back and I knew I had been hacked.”

 

Gauntt lost complete access to the account and refused to pay the hackers. He chose to start from scratch and make a new account.  

 

“It’s just really frustrating because it took a long time to build up what I had,” Gauntt said. “But it’s not a huge deal to build it all back up, it will just take more time. I already have a new account, @JaxsonGauntt2.0, so I can start posting again.”

 

Jaxson plans to pursue social media after he graduates highschool. His support system has helped him to where he is today and he plans to continue growing with them. 

 

“I definitely do want to pursue a career in social media even though I don’t really know what I’m doing after highschool yet,” Gauntt said. “I would say my biggest support comes from my family and my friends. But also I have gained a bunch of random people through social media who have been huge supporters.

 

Jaxsons love and commitment to being an influencer will continue over the following years. He shares some words of encouragement for those looking to do the same.

 

“If you want to start content, I just think go for it,” Gauntt said. “There’s obviously going to be people that are going to make fun of you but if it’s something you enjoy I think you should pursue it and just work hard at it.”

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About the Contributors
Samantha McConathy, Staff Writer
Samantha is a sophomore staff writer for the Eagle Eye and a Starstepper. She enjoys dancing at her studio; KDF, hanging out with friends, and attending youth group on Wednesdays and Sundays. Samantha hopes to attend Baylor University and major in nursing.
Keren Lee, Managing Editor of Video and Technology
Keren is a junior at Lindale High School, and she is the technology and video editor for the Eagle Eye.  She likes to socialize and spend time with her friends. Keren hopes to take a gap year for mission work and then go to college and maybe go abroad in the future.

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