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TikTok asks creators for help as bill to ban it moves through Congress

TikTok is asking creators to use the hashtag #KeepTikTok to share what the app means to them and how it has positively impacted them.
TikTok logo on a device
Posted at 1:03 PM, Mar 11, 2024

TikTok is calling on creators to share what the platform means to them as a bill to ban the app in the U.S. moves through Congress.

"A TikTok shutdown will silence your creativity," said the official @TikTokcreators account on Instagram.

"Every day, 170 million people depend on TikTok for education, entertainment, and personal expression," said the company. "Five million small businesses use TikTok to reach their customers. Millions of people in marginalized communities use TikTok to connect with each other." 

In the post, TikTok urged creators to create a video on what TikTok means to them and how it has positively impacted their lives using #KeepTikTok. 

"This bill would ban TikTok, stripping 170 million Americans of their constitutional right to free expression," said TikTok.

The company also asked creators to encourage their audience to tell Congress to vote "no" on the TikTok ban bill.

"Act now to protect your freedom to create," it said. 

This comes after a bipartisan group of lawmakers introduced a new piece of legislation last week that would give TikTok six months to either divest from its Chinese-owned parent company ByteDance or face a nationwide ban. The bill was reviewed Thursday by the House Committee on Energy and Commerce and passed unanimously. It's now poised for a vote on the House floor.

Lawmakers said TikTok users have been flooding their offices with calls. 

Politico reported that one person called a Republican official and said, "If you ban TikTok, I will kill myself."

But creators also lashed out at TikTok over recent changes to its algorithm that is allegedly silencing their content. On the Instagram post where TikTok called on creators to speak out, comments poured in with users expressing their frustration.

"How about you let creators who have a huge following actually succeed on the platform," wrote Sam Paige.

Another user, Inna Kanevsky, wrote, "I would if TikTok wasn't already silencing my content. You aren't supporting us. Why should we support you?"

Social media users in the comments said they were glad to see creators not supporting TikTok, with others noting TikTok's public plea didn't go as expected.

"Every day TikTok silences the content big creators make anyways," said Augie Bello. "So I'm kind of looking forward to them getting a taste of their own medicine." 

About 42% of TikTok users report they believe the app to be a national security concern, according to a poll conducted by Pew Research Center.

New bill would force TikTok to divest from China, or face US ban
The TikTok logo displayed on a smartphone.

New bill would force TikTok to divest from China, or face US ban

The bipartisan piece of legislation cites national security concerns over TikTok's ties to its Chinese-owned parent company ByteDance.