Chagrin class of 2023’s favorite internet trends throughout High School


Photo Courtesy of Google Commons

For the class of 2023, high school was a whirlwind. From a global pandemic to new social media apps,  this year’s seniors have seen it all. 

Freshman year began with the rise of TikTok, with fall 2019 being flooded with videos of viral star Charli D’amelio and dances to do with friends. You couldn’t leave your “For You” page without seeing the “Renegade” or “Say So” dance.

“I loved all the dancing trends it was hilarious seeing all the guys do them on TikTok,” said senior Jenna Santamaria.   

Along with dances, 2019 brought hilarious memes like the “VSCO girl” trend, where participants would dress up as a typical “VSCO girl”, wearing scrunchies and carrying hydro flasks.

“The VSCO girl trend was funny cause freshman year all of us would say “sksksksk” to all the upperclassmen,” added Santamaria.  

Following the 2019 fun of Tiktok came the COVID-19 pandemic, and along with it, a slew of new trends and jokes. With extra time on their hands, TikTok users were playing soccer with rolls of toilet paper and pranking friends with funny texting challenges. 

“The trend where everyone posed as their favorite album covers was so funny, everyone got to be really creative” Santamaria continued. 

As the pandemic continued into the 2020 election, Tiktok and Twitter users poked fun at newscasters, as well as the results and controversy surrounding President Joe Biden’s win. The apps became a place where users could go to escape the realities of the real world and use humor to cope.  

“[Internet trends] have been a great way for people to be connected and break the monotony of everyday life,” explained senior Nathan Hill.

The pandemic also gave internet users extra time to watch their favorite shows and movies, and users began to post fun edits and jokes about new characters from shows they were bingeing. 

“I loved the trend from a few years ago on TikTok where people would just put really stupid and niche characters or movies into a song, I know that I made one with the movie “Ma” that was just really dumb but my friends got a big kick from it,” Hill added. 

Films like “Ma”, a horror movie that was meant to scare audiences, morphed into a comedy from the funny edits posted all over Tiktok.

 Shows that were released before the pandemic gained traction and watchers. For “Euphoria”, a show released in 2019 by HBO, fans of the show began a trend to dress up in costumes from famous episodes. By the time of the release of the show’s second season, the number of viewers had doubled, and every episode was discussed and broken down on Tiktok and Twitter.

By 2021, schools were back open and students were out and about again, back in the halls doing Tiktok dances and finding new ways to go viral. 

“Once we got back to school, my favorite trend definitely became the shadow-boxing challenge,” said senior Anthony Rybak. The trend involved participants pointing in the air in different directions, while their competitors tried to guess where their finger was going. 

“It made for some good laughs and fun competitions for sure,” Rybak added. 


Along with the fun trends came some that had dangerous repercussions. In the “Devious Licks” trend, students were dared to enter their school bathroom and steal items like soap dispensers, toilet paper rolls, and even pieces of stalls and sinks. Bathrooms were left destroyed and schools even locked them for most of the day. It came to the point where when users searched up the trend, they were met with a “No results found”. 

With the rise of digital currency and stock trading during COVID came the trend to buy and sell Non-fungible tokens(NFTs). The NFTs circulated throughout the web in the form of digital art or singers’ unreleased albums. Twitter users debated the true value of these items and discussed how they would evolve in the future. Facebook Founder Mark Zuckerberg also introduced the “Metaverse” a virtual reality-centered universe where users could show off their NFTs and interact virtually with sellers around the world. Zuckerberg’s announcement initiated even more debates around the future of virtual reality. 

Now, as graduation nears, seniors are looking back on what the fun of internet trends really meant to them.

“The best memory I have linked to a trend is when the girl’s basketball team would make dance TikToks in the locker room before games. I especially loved the ‘I Just Wanna Rock’ dance from Lil Uzi Vert,  we would just dance and it would help us relieve the tension before we played,” Santamaria explained. 

Getting online can relieve stress or induce it, but without the wonder of the internet, high school wouldn’t have been the same. 

Hill values the connection it creates between students, “it’s great when there’s this thing whether it be a style or joke that everyone around you sort of understands and you can just use it as a conversation starter or joke.”