For those of us born before the internet, the world looks a whole lot different than it used to. But for Gen Z, who literally never knew a world that wasn’t online, it’s even more mind-blowing to see what everyday life was like before smart phones, iPads and unlimited WiFi.
The video is just the latest in a string of nostalgic TikToks to go viral on the app — like the woman who found a JCPenney purse full of 1994 goodies sitting in her mom’s attic, or the TikToker who stunned viewers with relics from her 2000s teen bedroom.
The viral clip was recently shared by Cara Patricia (@carapatriciasf), a self-described “aging millennial” who is old enough to remember when we still got most of our information from the newspaper.
“You know, back in my day, if you wanted to see Miss Congeniality, you had to go through the newspaper and you had to find the local movie directories and then you had to go through and find that theater and be like, ‘Well, they are playing Miss Congeniality on two screens,” Patricia says in the clip, as she flips through an old newspaper. “Or, we can go see Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon. Or the Emperor’s New Groove.”
The clip is highly nostalgic for anyone who lived through the Y2K era. In fact, Patricia even zooms in on the paper’s heading at the end of the TikTok, revealing that it was published on December 31, 2000 — pre-9/11, pre-iPod and pre-social media.
“GenZ could never,” the vide’s caption reads. “The internet wasnt as robust as it is now. Maybe you could log into AOL and find the movie portal, or you could call Moviefone, but it was a hassel.”
Instead, Patricia notes that checking the newspaper used to be “the MOST EFFECIENT” way to find a movie. Today, most of us would just Google it or ask Alexa.
The TikTok has now been viewed more than 300,000 times, transporting many users right back to the year 2000 like a virtual time capsule.
“Memory unlocked,” wrote a user named TJ (@jenkiessss). “I can smell this newspaper lol I would through my grandparents paper and beg them to take me to the movies lol.”
“Don’t forget calling the theater and listen to the recording of them reading the showtimes movie by movie,” added @contentabsorber, in reference to Moviefone.
“It’s like life before the Internet was a fever dream,” said @__alliebruh.
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