TikTok Knocking (dancing around the data)

tiktok masterclass

TikTok Knocking (dancing around the data)

There’s a lady I know (like actually) who recently discovered that TikTok was a great way to get kids to listen to her band’s music. Just about the time the entire shitshow is going to be unplugged, she’s discovered a passion for Tok-ing. The conversation recently turned sour between us as I celebrated the government’s probe into how back the data leak with China is on TikTok.

“I wholeheartedly disagree,” she said. It was the “wholeheartedly” that got me.

I pointed to the fact that China has no good intentions for her data or the data of her friends and followers (on TikTok or wherever). She seemed to think I was only concerned for the kids. “It’s about parenting,” she said. “Not banning TikTok.” She didn’t take her own data, and my connection to that data if I “connected” to her on TikTok. (Subscribed? Liked?)

Here’s my masterclass on TikTok, free of charge. TikTok is spying on you, your friends, and sharing content based on their (China’s) plans, not yours. And there’s nothing you can do about it, other than quit TikTok. But, even if you quit and delete all your data, they still own every bit of content you’ve created. And just because you deleted it, they don’t have to.

If the Chinese control TikTok and all of it’s data, algorithms, search functions, and the ability to craft your “feed” into whatever they want, what’s GOOD about that? Sure, it’s all fun and dances, but…

She did not understand.

A few days later she posted a rant from a TikTok star about the TikTok bill being considered in congress. The dude was lit up. He was misguided and hyperbolic, but he was furious. And with his following, I’m sure he was going to make a big splash with the Chinese and his followers. Congress and the rest of the actual world, not so much. And here’s the thing. We’ve been through this before. We’ve seen and squashed nefarious apps and websites before. It’s not the end of social media as we know it. It might be the end of TikTok in America, but what’s so bad about that?

And so my friend and I wrestle on Facebook about TikTok, her love my disdain, and neither of us are really hearing the other’s point. But that’s the way social media works these days. You simply BROADCAST YOUR BULLSHIT and don’t look back at the haters. I don’t hate TikTok or social media. But like Flappy Bird and Vine before it, no app or social media platform is too big to regulate nor to popular to be banned.

You won’t find me posting on TikTok. Yet.

Read more Short-Short Stories from John.

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