Mark Zuckerberg Paid Republican Firm To Push Message “TikTok Is The Real Threat”, Scroll down to know the whole story. Recently, Meta, the owner of Facebook, Instagram, and other social media platforms, has been reportedly paying a striking GOP consulting firm to create public mistrust around TikTok.
The campaign, launched by the Republican strategy firm Targeted Victory, placed letters to the editor in many different publications, accusing TikTok of being a hazard to American children, along with other trivializing accusations. Read more to find out more about the updates
Is TikTok Really A Threat?
A staffer said- “Dream would be to get stories with headlines like ‘From dances to danger: how TikTok has become the most harmful social media space for kids. ” A director from a firm said- The firm wanted to “get the message out that while Meta is the current punching bag, TikTok is the real threat, especially as a foreign-owned app that is #1 in sharing data that young teens are using.”
Campaign operatives encouraged stories to local media, plus some unconfirmed claims, that handcuffed TikTok to supposedly dangerous and harmful trends that were becoming popular among teenagers – even though those trends first surfaced on Facebook. These trends consisted of the viral 2021 “devious lick” trend, where students vandalized school property. Targeted Victory pushed stories on “devious lick” to local publications in Michigan, Minnesota, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, and Washington DC. But the trend originally surfaced on Facebook, according to an investigation by Anna Foley with the podcast Reply All.
Campaign workers roamed around with anti-TikTok messages to divert from t from criticisms that Meta had received for its privacy and antitrust policies.
A staffer from Targeted Victory said- “Bonus point if we can fit this into a broader message that the current bills/proposals aren’t where [state attorneys general] or members of Congress should be focused.”
In a comment to the Post, a TikTok representative said that the company was “deeply concerned” about “the stoking of local media reports on alleged trends that have not been found on the platform”. A Meta representative, Andy Stone, said in defense of the campaign to the Washington Post : “We believe all platforms, including TikTok, should face a level of scrutiny consistent with their growing success.”
Negative Effects Of TikTok
Addiction: Since the app boasts an “endless stream” of material, students are likely to spend a long time in the app and might even become addicted to watching the videos for hours at a time.
Bullying: A high school principal in New York tells Smart Social Founder Josh Ochs that students are being bullied on TikTok. Some students are making fun of each other’s videos, while others are making videos just to ridicule their fellow students.
Comparison: Some students make outrageous, and even dangerous, videos to get more likes and followers. Social media challenges are an easy way to gain likes, but some of the challenges are not appropriate for tweens and teens.
Safety Concerns: Apps like TikTok can easily be used by predators to solicit minors because the app makes it easy for strangers to direct message children. “There are no restrictions as to who can join the app and it is used internationally, connecting virtually everyone,” explained Digital Family Expert Theresa Desuyo, at the parental control software company Qustodio.
Mental Health: Some experts report it can be easy to come across triggering content on the app that could promote issues like self-harm or eating disorders.
Why Is TikTok popular?
Studies done to know why TikTok is so popular indicated that many people felt they could be themselves on this platform and felt that the content was authentic, genuine, unfiltered, interesting, and trendsetting. The study showed:
- 64% of users say they can be their true selves on TikTok.
- 56% of TikTok users say they can post videos they wouldn’t post elsewhere.
- 53% of users say they trust others to be their real selves on TikTok.
“An average of 31% of TikTok users included “lifting my spirits” as one of the top three reasons for returning to the TikTok platform again and again.”
People felt it was a more positive space in comparison to Facebook which appeared to have a negative effect on the mental health of many people. People perceived the content firsthand even though it was shared on other platforms too. Some studies showed:
- 79% of users find content on TikTok to be unique or different.
- 68% of TikTok users find advertising content different from any competitive platform.
- 60% of users internationally (excluding the US) say they follow brands on TikTok.
- 52% of users say they search for products or shop on the platform.
- 85% of users discover new content that they enjoy through the TikTok platform.
TikTok Is A Community
Among TikTok’s greatest strengths is the sense of community felt by its users. That’s shown by the different challenges and trends users take part in. The ability to sample others’ content, add to it and glorify it also helps users build better and stronger connections. Studies found:
- 59% of users feel a sense of community when they are on TikTok.
- 77% of users say TikTok is a place where people can express themselves openly.
- 84% of TikTok users say they come across content to which they can relate.
- 70% of users say TikTok is a platform they would recommend to others.
- 77% of users say they read the comments on the posts and videos on TikTok.
The main quality that TikTok possesses is the unique and positive environment that it provides to the users who feel more happy and comfortable using this application. They feel safe expressing themselves with their own content. This is why TikTok is so popular.
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