Whether you waste hours on it yourself, or your kids won’t stop doing some weird dance, chances are, you’ve heard of TikTok. Just like Tiger King, TikTok has become a staple of Quarantine. Thus, it has virtually taken over all of social media. The app started off in 2016. Then, it was predominantly ran by young teenagers who liked to dance to pop music. Now, it has become a source of concern for our government. The latest takes on the app is that TikTok now has access to all of your data and information. How is that possible? By accepting the terms and agreements, after first downloading the app, you allow access to your contacts. Not only that, but also GPS location and other personal information.
So what’s the appeal of TikTok anyway?
After being on the app a while, it starts to curate a feed specific to you. Depending on what types of posts you interact with, it determines what other kids of videos you will see. The app makes a personality for you, as though it knows you. Sometimes, it can be a little daunting.
There’re tons of jokes about an FBI agent watching your internet use. Are those really just jokes though? Regardless of it being a joke or not, people still consider it a valid threat. The same way people cover the camera on their laptop when they’re not using it. There is some truth in the idea that someone is always watching.
Having the app for your kid may not necessarily be the worst thing in the world. Though the same dangers of normal social media extend to this platform as well. The same kinds if weirdos and creeps still lurk there just like they do on Instagram and Facebook. The terms and agreements are virtually the same as well. Yet, having the app on government phones clearly leads to some serious concerns. The ban on downloading TikTok currently only extends to downloading the app on government issues electronics. Which not only protects government information, but also puts a stop to young boots embarrassing themselves on the internet. However, the president just made a huge announcement.
President Trump has begun making the final moves towards banning the app. Furthermore, stating that if an American company does not move to buy it, TikTok will not be allowed in the U.S.
However, even with the encouragement for Americans to make a move, Trump has also issued an executive order banning ordinary companies from making transactions with ByteDance. This being the company that owns TikTok. It will have to take a “huge deal” to encourage a change in this standstill over the app. President Trump says that if there is no intervention before September 15, the app will be banned from American phones and we will join India in the protest against China.
In a press release, TikTok claimed it was “shocked” by the executive order. Additionally, claiming the commander-in-chief’s cabinet “paid no attention to facts, dictated terms of an agreement without going through standard legal processes, and tried to insert itself into negotiations between private businesses.”
Who’s to blame for all this paranoia?
TikTok is based out of China, a recognized source of conflict in our current state of politics. Back in July, India made an official ban against the app, and surprisingly joined the Chinese population in their vacancy. That’s right, Chinese citizens are not able to use the app themselves. This fact leads to even more suspicion. Japan and Pakistan are some of the few other countries whom are considering banning the app as well. Both feeling a threatening eye from China.
Furthermore, some critics claim the president is still angry about his Tulsa rally. This is where hundreds of TikTok users claimed they inflated attendance projections. A feat they state was done by registering for hundreds of thousands of fake tickets, with no plan to attend. This caused some political embarrassment towards an event already criticized because of COVID-19.
Nevertheless, the president claims this is in the best interest of the American people. Also, that this act is a warning to other countries looking to steal data from American citizens. What do you think about this? Sound off in the comments below!