TikTokers Blocking Escalator for Dance Receive Backlash From Onlookers

People seem willing to try almost anything for a good TikTok video—and viewers can't get enough. But what happens when the making of click-worthy content comes at the expense of others? Recently, some influencers and content creators have come under fire for the effects that their stunts and pranks have on the public, ranging from mild annoyances to potentially causing serious physical or emotional harm.

One influencer is sparking some of these conversations after her TikTok, in which she blocks the entrance to a public escalator in order to film a dance, went viral. Also a singer and YouTuber, Andra Gogan's TikTok page is filled with these clips, in which a phone filming the scene is placed onto a moving escalator step. The end result is a dance video that tracks with the escalator's slow, backward ascent.

This particular clip posted mid-June and viewed over 30 million times, seems to have struck a chord with viewers—partially because, as a "behind the scenes" post, several people are shown waiting for Andra and her peer to finish their dance before they are able to use the escalator.

Viewers in the comments section appeared to take issue with that aspect of the video, with many calling it "embarrassing."

"Okay do what ya want in public but do not inconvenience other people because y'all want to make a video...damn kids," wrote one commenter.

Said another: "It's the lack of consideration for me."

"When the people were waiting I literally died on the inside of secondhand embarrassment," read one comment. Others, meanwhile, wondered what would happen if someone had, in an emergency, needed the escalator at that moment.

Not everyone denounced Gogan's stunt. As one viewer wrote, "I guess I'm the only one that would be chill about it and just wait at the bottom till they're done. I'm not trippin, no rush."

Newsweek attempted to contact Gogan for further comment but did not hear back in time for publication.

While briefly blocking an escalator entrance may be a relatively innocuous example, the backlash against Gogan speaks to the larger question that arises when influencers, often relying on the currency of shock and novelty, implicate those around them when creating content.

Earlier this year, for example, two influencers faced deportation from Bali after their "prank" caught the attention of authorities. In the incident, which they documented on social media, Josh Paler Lin painted a blue surgical mask onto Leia Se's face, in an attempt to see if she could evade COVID-19 mask guidelines—and endangering their fellow patrons in the process.

Last week, a white influencer named Oli London "came out" as nonbinary and Korean—despite not actually being Korean. The announcement, coupled with London's several surgeries to look like K-pop star Jimin, was deemed deeply offensive by many Koreans and members of the LGBTQ+ community.

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Two TikTokers faced backlash online after a video showed them blocking an escalator at a busy mall while recording a dance routine. This image shows a TikTok ad in Berlin from 2020. Sean Gallup/Getty Images