Social media giant TikTok just achieved a major milestone: 1 billion monthly users.

Whether this achievement is to be celebrated by the general public or mourned as the hallmark of our degeneration into shorter attention spans and self-destructive behavior, we will leave to the casual observer to decide.

The TikTok explosion

The rapid proliferation of the app’s growth is particularly noteworthy. Just last July, TikTok only had 689 million users; the shift translates to a 45 percent jump in growth over the past year. Compare that to Facebook, which, while it currently vaunts 2.9 billion active monthly users, has only seen a 7 percent increase in growth over the past year.

And that’s not all – TikTok has also reported 3 billion global downloads – becoming the first non-Facebook app to reach this milestone.

What doesn’t kill you…

The company has proved remarkably resilient against global concerns over its data-sharing and data security practices. Over the past year, it has survived attempts to block its transactions with the U.S., and today it currently boasts formidable markets in the United States, Europe, Brazil and Southeast Asia. Most recently, TikTok was banned in India Рa move which cost it 200 million users.

Desperate to compete with the short-form video craze, social media peers like Instagram, and Reddit have attempted to launch or at least test similar features on their platforms. Instagram has even gone so far as to purposefully muffle any reels with the TikTok watermark in the corner.

If TikTok’s recent triumphs are any indicator, they’re facing an uphill battle. In the meantime, we’re happy to watch the tech clone wars unfold.