(TheConservativeTimes.org) – We’ve heard before about the possibility of the United States banning TikTok. It began around March when United States senators introduced the Restrict Act, which would allow the US president the power to give TikTok the boot for national security reasons.
The war between Israel and Gaza has brought this debate back to the forefront, and it’s now being reconsidered. Content all over social media, especially TikTok, has not been filtered to remove violent content from this war, or the bigotry resulting.
UN Ambassador Nikki Haley said that for every 30 minutes people spend watching TikTok, they are “17% more antisemitic. More pro-Hamas.”
The war itself has sparked curiosity within the younger generation, who have gone digging for more information regarding the war and the involvement of the US in the Middle East.
This led to many thinking that the United States was in support of violent acts and may have been to blame for letting the war get this far. Younger TikTok users even posted videos regarding Osama Bin Laden, expressing sympathy for his terrorist acts in connection to his recently unearthed letter. Ultimately TikTok responded by removing this kind of content.
Some are calling out about the lack of differences between TikTok and other social media accounts. Dina Ibrahim, a professor of Broadcast and Electronic Arts Communication said, “All of it is spyware. When you install X, Facebook, Instagram or TikTok on your phone, it is spyware, whether it’s American or Chinese. That’s all it is. Pure and simple.”
She continued, “They’re engineered for misinformation. They are engineered so that you, the reader or the viewer seeking information, are deliberately fed what you already believe.”
Other social media platforms have dealt with problems regarding the Israel war, exposing bigotry on the other side. Instagram’s translation tool added the word “terrorist” to the bios of Palestinian users and WhatsApp answered prompts regarding Palestine with images of children with guns. This is just some examples of how social media is creating issues around this conflict.
Many are expressing how TikTok isn’t being held to the same standard as social media companies when it comes to free speech and censorship. The platform X, which was formerly Twitter, was confirmed to be working with the US government in suppressing, amplifying, or removing specific content, and this was all revealed from the release of the Twitter Files.
This makes many policymakers and users of the platforms concerned about the actual intentions behind any kind of censorship or content suppression.
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