Tik-ed Off?


Karlos Mancilla

This past summer, the Trump administration put in place an executive order to ban the social media app Tik Tok in the United States if it wasn’t sold in 45 days to a US based company, citing user privacy concerns by the app’s Chinese based owners ByteDance for the ban. Considering the app has over 2 billion downloads (315 million of which came in the first fiscal quarter of 2020) this news sent shockwaves through the world of social media and led to companies like Instagram to create an alternative to Tik Tok called Reels and Triller. US software company Oracle has reportedly reached a deal with ByteDance to buy out Tik Tok’s US operations, however the deal is yet to be finalized and a shutdown is not averted as of Monday, October 5th.

For a student’s perspective, The Blue And White spoke with Senior Delia Miller. Miller is a regular Tik Tok user who told us she “spends around two hours on Tik Tok” daily. So considering how  long Delia spends on the app, it was worth asking how she’d feel about a potential ban. “Not too surprised or scared considering a ban was threatened before and nothing happened then,” she says. On the topic of privacy concerns, Miller explains, “I don’t have too many concerns with the app and my privacy, because I’m used to data collection on the internet and I understand Tik Tok isn’t unique to that.” As for the aforementioned alternatives Delia thinks that “the alternatives don’t match up for me and I don’t have any interest in using them…I wouldn’t use them because they lack the originality of Tik Tok and their interface that’s a little different from Tik Tok that creates a strange feeling.” As you might expect, frequent users such as Delia will miss something about Tik Tok should it be banned. “It’s fast paced setup and diverse community” are qualities that Delia and others want to stay a part of.