Social Effects of Tik Tok, Is it Worth it?

The well known video sharing application, Tik Tok, owned by a multinational internet technology company in Beijing, China, Byte Dance also known as Duyin, an influential service connecting with about 850 million monthly active users globally. 

More than 100 million Americans engage with this highly addictive IOS and Android application. 

“Using Tik Tok allows me to express myself and become more open about my personality and my view on life and people with the same views as me can share a connection,” junior Fatu Kalokoh said. “Tik Tok has let me discover a new and fun way of communication to reach people like me while creating videos,” Kalokoh said.

On the downside, Tik Tok is highly addictive and takes over the lives of users. Unproductivity is a common result of the app. Many students have a hard time escaping the compelling app.

“While watching Tik Tok, I lose track of time and want to constantly scroll through the app, the app’s different videos force me to lose focus from everything else, but it is a great source of entertainment,”Junior Shada Ibrahim said.

Although the entertainment app offers many socially influential opportunities, it also has its downfalls. Current President Donald Trump declares Tik Tok a threat to national security. The personal information of the US users could be passed over to Chinese authorities. 

Recognized as the most valuable startup, Byte Dance, the parent of Tik Tok continues to pose a security risk. Under Chinese ownership, vulnerabilities on the app may lead to a decreased level of security.

 Specific flaws may include access to geolocation information, IP address, and unique device information appearing through its privacy policy.

 India’s Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology banned the use of Tik Tok proving the “stealing and surreptitiously transmitting users” data outside of the country. 

“The United States must take aggressive action against the owners of TikTok to protect our national security,” said Trump’s Administration attempting to escape the threats.  

The obvious question pertains to, will students continue to use Tik Tok regardless of the security threats? Although there are several dangerous outcomes that can come out of using Tik Tok, students seem to keep busy scrolling without worries.