TikTok seems to have come with a new controversy this week. They are apparently engaged in a new trend involving inappropriate livestreams. Many users are finding it highly absurd and expressing their concerns on social media.
TikTok is a video content making and social networking application with access to every form of music. It was originated in China in 2016, and is owned by ByteDance Ltd. It has millions of users and is one of the most popular apps in the United States.
In this new trend, live videos featuring a user, mainly a young woman is being shared. This clothed woman is apparently seen to be simulating sex. The issues lies in the fact that these videos are being recommended to users who have not consented to viewing such sexual content,
Tiktok only removes these simulated sex livestream the moment they get to know of it. Unfortunately, this is not immediate and is highly dependent on the reports on such content made by users.
As social media apps like TikTok and Instagram have guidelines on sexual content, these videos are prohibited. These guidelines mention prohibition of content that “mimic, imply or display sex acts.” This is keeping in mind that these social media platforms have a huge base of younger users.
The trend has spread so widely that it is causing social media conversations about these ‘disturbing’ and inappropriate videos. The users were irked by the videos that came up on their ‘For You’ page. This section is often personalised and calculated through an algorithm. The were surprised how it was relevant to them.
The viral Twitter Thread that followed the conversation: (Warning: explicit language):
Most of these videos feature a person on camera, usually visible from above the shoulder. They’re seen to be laying down flat and simulating sex with what is assumed to be a nonexistent partner. Some of them initiate from a mundane activity on screen or the person just talking to the users.
Such activity showcases the absurdity of content on internet and how some of it goes against TikTok policies. It is evident that of the creators are earning money from sharing such content.
Importantly, one must note that platform like TikTok and Instagram have grown to be hostile to sex workers. This leaved them scrambling to come up with revenue generating trends.
Although, people are complaining about these videos inappropriately showing up on personal feed, it is still generating engagement. TikTok plans to remove such content and ban the users who had posted these.