Tik Tok On The Clock, DJ Blow My Speakers Up

Image Courtesy of Amazon.com

Image Courtesy of Amazon.com

Valentina Jimenez, Staff Writer

Tik Tok is arguably the most popular app at the moment, and for good reason. Its platform is one that creates a community between people from all areas of the world. I have seen and learned so much from other cultures and ideas as a user myself on the app. But, Tik Tok has been leading a turbulent year, with drama coming straight from the White House. But behind the app, is the woman who is trying to keep the ship afloat. Her name is Vanessa Pappas, the interim global head, as the previous CEO stated in august, he was leaving the company.  She has been focusing on the content creators of Tik Tok and how to prioritize the users and creators, leaving the drama surrounding the ownership of the app to other executives.

To focus on community, Tik Tok formed a creator fund, starting with “$200 million to help support ambitious creators who are seeking opportunities to foster a livelihood through their innovative content” (Pappas) expecting the fund to grow over $1 billion in the next couple of years. Ms. Pappas praises the algorithm, which allows creators of any social group to potentially be discovered, and “go viral” increasing the lure of the app to generation Z and even their parents. This apps algorithm figures out what you like and throws videos of that genre onto your discover page. I’ve seen this with my own eyes, with one of my friends “For You” page being all fitness, my own being fashion and makeup, and someone else has “spiritual Tik Tok” and conspiracy theories.

Recently, Ms. Pappas has had to work through keeping the Tik Tok community connected while having to deal with the political conflict between Tik Tok and the United States government. President Trump issued an executive order accusing Tik Tok of “providing a channel for the Chinese Communist Party to obtain Americans’ proprietary information, keep tabs on Chinese citizens abroad and carry out disinformation campaigns to benefit China’s interest”. He ordered that the app would need to be owned by an American company with 45 days of his executive order, or else the app would be banned in the U.S. India had already banned the app.

In rebuttal, Tik Tok is filing a complaint in federal court challenging the Trump Administrations efforts to ban Tik Tok in the U.S. They “have taken extraordinary measures to protect the privacy and security of Tik Tok’s U.S. user data, including by having Tik Tok store such data outside of China (in the United States and Singapore) and by erecting software barriers that help ensure that Tik Tok stores its U.S. user data separately from the user data of other ByteDance products.” Which had the company feeling directly attacked. They still have to find a parent company before the end of September, but suing the admiration is a step towards rectifying the situation.

Microsoft, Walmart, and Oracle were the top companies bidding for the ownership of Tik Tok, but it was just recently announced that Microsoft was rejected by the parent company ByteDance. On top of that, “ China issued new regulations that would essentially bar Tik Tok from transferring its technology to a foreign buyer without explicit permission from the Chinese government” further complicating the future of Tik Tok and where it stands in the U.S. As of right now, Tik Tok is still looking for a permanent home in America, but Ms. Pappas is doing a phenomenal job of putting the creators and users first and create a space where people can feel connected in this era of isolation.