A new trend is taking over TikTok- using American Sign Language (ASL) to translate a song called “Two Birds” by Regina Spektor. And though many who are deaf or hard of hearing appreciate their language receiving attention and awareness on the app, many are signing the songs incorrectly and refusing to take criticism, which worries some deaf influencers on TikTok.
One popular influencer, @Chrissycanthearyou, who is known for making content about being deaf and ASL, posts a video of the way she would sign the song, as there can be multiple ways. In the caption, she explains that she loves “watching people take a go at this, but so many don’t make sense.” In another video, she explains that she appreciates people taking the time to learn. However, other deaf influencers are concerned with the notions behind the trend.
In one video, she does a skit to highlight that though learning sign language to the song is great, and there is nothing wrong with being a beginner, it does not mean that someone “knows” the language. In the caption, she notes that “Sign language is not a trend, it’s a necessity” as the language seemed to be a “trend” on TikTok, as opposed to a vital language that many use for communication. Other creators were also noting that facial expressions are equally important to correct signs in the language, which some people were leaving out as they signed along to the song.
Though some are not listening to corrections from deaf influencers or understanding how ASL is a language, not a trend, many users on TikTok took the time to try to learn the correct signs for the song, sign them properly, along with accurate facial expressions. Many who partook in the trend also were happy to learn, with many captions asking for users to point out mistakes so they can try again.