Lifestyle / Opinion / The World

TikTok should not be banned

In recent years, security concerns have been raised about the popular TikTok app. The Chinese company that owns TikTok and ByteDance, is accused of sharing user information with the Chinese government and promoting political campaigns. Congress is questioning TikTok’s involvement with the Chinese communist party, citing a national security threat. In March, the Biden administration threatened to implement a nationwide ban if Chinese owners do not sell their shares. While I understand the reasoning behind these concerns, I believe that banning TikTok would be detrimental and damaging to all of its users and the general public. 

Since its official launch in 2016, TikTok has become a very popular mobile app which allows over 1.5 billion users to create and share short and entertaining videos. I love how this platform consists of people from all different ages, races, and backgrounds, creating a comfortable environment. It is a place where people can express themselves and interact by liking, commenting, and sharing TikToks. Originally named, TikTok is a form of social media that permits creators to film all sorts of personal TikToks. Although it started off as a dancing and lip syncing app, TikTok has quickly expanded its community by encouraging its users to generate other types of videos; now it is known for its humorous skits and informative videos. 

In my opinion, Tiktok is an entertaining app where creators are relatable, genuine, and real people. Many people get their news from verified creators, and it has played a big role in movements such as the Black Lives Matter Movement. Tiktok has quickly become my most used app, and my screen time on it averages to around two and a half hours a day. Whenever I need to take a break from my homework, I take a few minutes to scroll through tiktoks and see what the latest trends are. Tiktok’s algorithm is something that makes this app particularly stand out to me. It is a user led experience, as consumers are the ones who decide what they like and see. This draws my attention and encourages me to want to keep scrolling through more and more videos. 

Despite its popularity and perks, lawmakers in the United States are currently attempting to ban the app in the name of cybersecurity. Over 150 million Americans, almost half of its population, have downloaded the platform. As of recently, Tiktok has found itself the center of attention in Congress, which has expressed its concerns over data privacy and security. Although security threats and propaganda promotion are real concerns, I am not entirely convinced that we should trust what Congress has been saying. They recently had a hearing with TikTok’s CEO, Shou Zi Chew, which did not convince me that they were completely educated on the topic. The hearing was almost childish; Mr. Chew found it hard to speak as Congress members interrupted him and asked ignorant questions. The hearing lasted almost five hours and addressed the concerns of security violations. It was almost ridiculous, as legislators asked Mr. Chew unrelated questions such as if TikTok connects to the Wifi. Therefore, I am questioning whether these security concerns are real, or at least if Congress knows enough about them to act accordingly.  

I believe that Congress is mainly trying to ban TikTok because it is economic competition from American companies. TikTok is continuing to rise in popularity, and this has made it a rival of American platforms like Instagram and Facebook. It makes me wonder if another reason why Congress wants to ban TikTok is because it is a private company, unlike public companies like Instagram and Facebook. I feel like lawmakers are trying to control what people do, and I question if this ban goes against freedom of speech ideologies. 

There are many different viral trends and challenges on the app that encourage user activity and promote more shares and views. TikTok has quickly become an occupation for many and is a way in which creators can make money from endorsements and advertising products. It has pushed people into fame and given them major opportunities that are similar to celebrities. For example, Charli D’amelio was made famous by this app and has made her living off of partnerships. She is considered a top celebrity for the new generation and has been invited to the Nickelodeon Kids Choice Awards and the Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon.

This ultimatum is quite difficult, but all in all, I believe that TikTok should not be banned because of all of the benefits that it brings. 


Comments are closed.