A TikTok creator is bringing attention to what many have argued is merely the latest example of the wildly popular app’s unfair treatment of people of color.
In recent days, TikTok user @ziggityler has shared a number of videos focused on what he says he experienced when trying to update his bio in the app’s Creator Marketplace. For those who don’t know, the Creator Marketplace is the app’s self-described “official platform for brand and creator collaborations.”
Tyler demonstrated via a screen recording that he repeatedly received an “inappropriate content” warning when trying to include specific words or phrases in his bio. Among the attempted bio additions Tyler showed being blocked on the platform were “Black,” “Black Lives Matter,” “Black people, “Black success,” “Pro-Black,” and “I am a Black man.”
To further test this, Tyler decided to use opposing phrases that should actually trigger an “inappropriate content” warning. When using phrase like “pro-white” and “supporting supremacy,” as well as more extreme examples including “neo-Nazi” and “anti-Semitic,” Tyler was allowed to save his bio and proceed forward within the Creator Marketplace system.
“White people can get on here and call me the n-word and make videos about violent extremism but I can’t do anything,” Tyler said in an earlier video. “We can’t do anything.”
Tyler, who currently has more than 373,000 followers on TikTok, is now directing his fans to start following him on YouTube and Instagram instead.
Complex has reached out to TikTok for additional comment and will update this post accordingly. In a statement included in a separate Forbes report from Abram Brown, a TikTok spokesperson attributed Tyler’s experience to what they claim was an inaccurate algorithm setting.
“Our TikTok Creator Marketplace protections, which flag phrases typically associated with hate speech, were erroneously set to flag phrases without respect to word order,” the rep said on Wednesday. “We recognize and apologize for how frustrating this was to experience.”
Earlier this year, many Black TikTok creators took a stand over the lack of credit they receive for creating viral dance trends. The app has also faced previous allegations of limiting the reach of specific content, including during the anti-police brutality protests of 2020.
In an open letter to the app’s Black community shared in June of last year, TikTok’s U.S. general manager Vanessa Pappas and director of creator community Kudzi Chikumbu acknowledged this issue, blaming a “technical glitch” for the appearance that posts tagged with #BlackLivesMatter and #GeorgeFloyd had received zero views.
Credit: Source link