Many social-media and tech firms are against the growing success of TikTok.
- TiktTok is the news giant in the tech world, and many companies feel threatened.
- Tech giants are worried about the future of other apps as TikTok dominates the market.
- Not only are others worried about losing users, but there are also safety concerns stemming from TikTok.
- Because the app is owned by Chinese company ByteDance, industry insiders fear TikTok’s U.S. customer data could be at risk since Chinese law requires China’s companies to share information with the government.
- TikTok says it operates independently and protects U.S. data through a partnership with computer technology corporation, Oracle.
Why it’s important
In the last few years, Tiktok has soared in popularity. The short-form, video-sharing app has one billion active users and has a specially curated algorithm that adjusts to each user to bring videos it knows they will enjoy.
The app surpassed 1 billion users in just over five years, reaching that milestone many years faster than giants like Facebook, YouTube, and Instagram. It was also the most downloaded app globally last quarter, the eighth quarter in a row it’s held that position, according to app analytics firm, Sensor Tower.
The app’s Chinese ties remain the biggest concern for the company. As the app builds relationships with users through its algorithm, many worry misinformation could be spread and private information could be sent back to China.
During his presidency, former President Donald Trump tried to get the app banned citing the app as a national security threat. The app made it through the controversy, but once again concern is rising.
U.S. lawmakers are once again calling for TikTok to be banned in the states. The criticism stems from a Buzzfeed News report in June that said some U.S. user data has been repeatedly accessed from China. The reporting cited leaked audio recordings of dozens of internal TikTok meetings, including one where a TikTok employee allegedly said, “Everything is seen in China,” reports CNN.