- "TikTok Boys' has become a niche sub-category on a known fanfiction website called Wattpad.
- The stories detail fictional encounters with famous TikTokers such as Jaden Hossler, Anthony Reeves, Josh Richards, Payton Moormeier, and more.
- The stories are often written by female minors and contain graphic, violent, and sometimes non-consensual sexual encounters.
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TikTok, the popular video streaming app with an audience of over 500 million, has easily become the new default social media platform of choice for people of all ages. There are a few standout stars that have quickly risen to the ever-coveted status of TikTok fame. However, it appears that with fame, fanfiction inevitably follows.
Fanfiction is exactly as the name describes: fiction written by fans. While this genre of writing is recognized widely amongst fans of fictional characters, there are many stories written about real people, including TikTok stars.
There are nearly 10,000 stories on the popular fanfiction website Wattpad that showcase TikTokers as their subject matter. At first glance, this genre of writing appears to be a harmless way for fans to connect with people they admire or express their own sexuality. That is, until you start reading the stories. While some stories appear harmless, a majority of the writing romanticizes sexual slavery and aggression, often trivializing rape.
TikTok fan fiction can include graphic content.
A popular theme of these stories includes young girls being sold to TikTok boys by their parents into sex slavery. The writing is brief, lacks grammatical clarity or formatting, and closely resembles a stream of instant messages. Though the stories are often short, they depict scenes which are graphic in nature. Violence, aggression, rape, and being tricked into unprotected sex, are amongst the most concerning.
Fan fiction is nothing new. It has been around on the internet since the late 1990s and existed on paper long before that. Some international phenomena began as fan fiction, such as E.L. James' 50 Shades of Grey which was originally a fanfic about the popular teen saga Twilight by Stephenie Meyer. Fanfiction can be a fun way to include yourself in stories about your favorite idols, but sometimes it takes a more intimate turn.
We reached out to one writer of a popular TikTok fanfiction that depicts a young girl named Bella being sold as a sex slave to a group of boys including Anthony Reeves, Jaden Hossler, Payton Moormeier, Josh Richards, Chase Hudson, Bryce Hall, and Griffin Johnson. (This story has been removed after being brought to the attention of Wattpad staff by Insider). The author (referred to hereafter as Jules* to protect her privacy) told us she was 13 years old and said she began writing fanfiction after she saw YouTubers reading stories about themselves on their platform. She stated that her parents know about her writing, though it is unclear if they have read the story described.
When asked about the graphic and nonconsensual subject matter of the story, Jules stated that "the main idea of the story is a girl being sold to these boys as a sex slave. Therefore she is there against her will. Later on she is going to fall in love with the boys which makes them trust her more, and with that trust she isn't going to be there against her will, meaning she's allowed to leave but is expected to return."
The obvious concern with this statement is that what Jules described was nearly identical to a description of Stockholm syndrome. Stockholm syndrome is where victims of abduction begin to love or trust their captors. This is often done as a subconscious method of self-preservation.
The first sexual encounter in Jules' story with a fictional version of Jaden Hossler begins like this:
The protagonist clearly stated that she didn't want to participate, but is forced into the interaction anyway. In the end, Bella begins to enjoy the encounter and goes on to have relations with the other boys in the shared house. If the red flags weren't already raised, it gets far more explicit from there.
This story had 32,700 readers already and was still being updated before it was taken down. When asked about the potentially harmful nature of the content, Jules said, "I am concerned that can [sic] have a negative impact if it wasn't a fan fiction, but since it is I hope it doesn't."
Is it just harmless fun?
Writing like this sometimes romanticizes aggressive rape-like fantasies. The most problematic aspect of this TikTok sex slave fanfiction is that it is primarily written by minors, for minors, and often about minors. For example, the TikToker Payton Moormeier, who is often written about by fans, is only sixteen years old as of the writing of this article.
Insider reached out to Dr. Leslie Carter, a child psychologist outside of Portland, Oregon who assured us that middle schoolers and young teenagers have an incredibly dark sense of humor and understanding of the world. Dr. Carter said that it's likely that the topic of sexual slavery is common as a result of clustering – readers see the success of one story and then repeat a similar formula with their own.
Dr. Carter said, "We can't analyze this from an adult perspective. Adults will see this differently than the middle schoolers who wrote it. Students have only a fledgling awareness of sexuality, and a mass of hormones coursing through them."
A Wattpad spokesperson told Insider, "Our goal at Wattpad is to create a safe, inclusive and respectful space for everyone to share their voice. That's why we have a zero-tolerance approach to inappropriate content. If something violates our content guidelines or could potentially put our community at risk we don't debate, we remove it immediately."
Wattpad insists that users must be 13 years of age in order to use the platform, but mature content is restricted to users age 17 and over. The spokesperson did not clarify, however, if users under 17 years old were allowed to write mature content, and there are few safeguards in place besides entering one's birthday upon account creation.
Dr. Carter noted that Americans are prudish about sex as a culture, and that we provide very little guidance about real sexuality. And though we shy away from sexuality, we romanticize aggression. The pairing could be an explanation for why some teens mid-puberty intermingle the two.
Fan fiction doesn't come without dangers, however, psychologist Linda Papadopoulos noted to Insider's Lindsay Dodgson in a separate interview on the topic. Apart from the possibility of children connecting with an adult over sexual content, she noted that fan fiction could also create unhealthy fixations on themes that are popular in the content. By mixing community, with fantastical sexuality, fan faction can cause young people to become "fixated on certain characters and stories which can become a substitute for other, perhaps healthier, social activities and relationships," according to Papadopoulos.
TikTokers have discovered the writing, and have had various reactions.
The TikTokers themselves have caught on to the existence of these fanfictions, even going as far as to make videos reacting to them. Though the boys do treat the stories as a joke, it is clear that particular verbiage makes them uncomfortable.
In the video, Jaden Hossler said "I hate this. I hate it. I want to die. I want death right now!" after reading about himself. Later he stated: "I thoroughly believe that this is what people think we do."
Payton Moormeier, in the same video, said, "You guys are dirty… you know what's weird? To think that people masturbate to us, dude."
Josh Richards was less impressed with his representation in the story, jokingly stating: "Is this what you guys think of me?" And Anthony Reeves concluded the video by saying: "I feel sick to my stomach."
Baby Boomers often criticize the over-sexualization of Generation Z, and many point fingers at TikTok in particular as a potential outlet for this behavior. It seems that many TikTok fans and writers of fanfiction seem unphased by the provocative nature of the content. And while this form of expression can be playful, red flags are raised when consent is removed from the equation.
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