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What Do NAHS Students Think About the Proposed Tiktok Ban?

Tiktok CEO, Shou Zi Chew Vs. Lawmakers
Shou Zi Chew at the Congressional Hearing (Photo by Getty Images)

          Recently, the House of Representatives passed a nationwide bill to ban Tiktok from U.S, app stores. Nationwide, many U.S. citizens have a divided view on the recently passed Bill from the House. According to CNN Politics, Tiktok users and China claim that the possible U.S. ban of Tiktok is an “act of bullying” that would backfire on America, as it would disrupt market operations, sabotaging global economic order. If the bill passes through Congress, President Joe Biden has said he will sign the bill, according to CNN Politics. If passed, NBC News stated that it would give ByteDance five months to sell Tiktok, which many American companies are willing to buy the platform. Shark Tank investor, and businessman, Kevin O’Leary claims that he will buy the app, claiming the app is “worth billions.”, which he isn’t wrong as it is one of the most successful media platforms.

          Last year, in March 2023, U.S. lawmakers questioned Tiktok’s CEO, Shou Zi Chew over data security and harmful content due to allegations of the platform selling user data to the Chinese government. In AP News, there was no real cited information about Shou Zi Chew’s relations to the Chinese government, many still speculate if the allegations are true. Quite bizarre, the Tiktok CEO, Shou Zi Chew is from Singapore, and has no ties to the CCP. According to CNN Politics, These allegations can be possibly created due to Tiktok’s Chinese parent company, ByteDance, which also has no correlation to the Chinese government. Lawmakers have asked about Shou Zi Chew’s origins, but they seem to be ethnocentric, as they’ve asked deliberately if he’s Chinese despite being Singaporean. Chew has stated multiple times that he doesn’t correlate to the Chinese government, and it can be seen racist to assume that these U.S. lawmakers believe he is Chinese. 

How affected with students be with the removal of Tiktok? (Photo by David Ruvic)

          Students and faculty at NAHS are asked about how they feel about the House of Representatives passing a bill for the ban on Tiktok. Many students have a clear opinion on the bill being passed. Alexis Galadzhyan, a senior here at NAHS, states “I don’t mind it, but I know some people feel like we’re taking away their entertainment.” Many teens of today use Tiktok for their social media, which is understandable why they would feel mad. Valerie Garcia, another senior, states “It sucks.” It’s clear that Valerie uses the Tiktok app frequently, as it can be a source of entertainment for her. Other students, such as Carlos Altamira, state it’s “Pretty good, I feel like it is sketchy. However, it won’t change anything as Youtube, Instagram, or other sites will take over the platform. People who used Tiktok will just transfer to the other online platforms.” Another student, Jaron Magliano, a junior, states, “I think it might be better for some people, they’re addicted to their phones, scrolling all the time. Everyone’s gonna be moving to instagram now.” It is true that many teenagers are addicted to their phones, and ever since the pandemic, there’s a clear answer to why they are. Ms. Ortega, a college counselor here at NAHS, states, “Where am I gonna get my skincare tips from? My self-diagnosis of something when I am dying of something?” Some people use Tiktok for information that they cannot find elsewhere, which is understandable due to the lack of censorship on the platform, compared to Instagram and other social media platforms.

         It’s clear that most people don’t oppose the Tiktok banning, as there are other forms of entertainment platforms that people can use. Although, the reason for its banning can be questioned if this is hysteria, as the U.S. is still living in its Cold War days, living in fear of communist nations. What we do know for sure is that Tiktok isn’t correlated to the Chinese government, and that its CEO, Shou Zi Chew, is not Chinese. The selling of user data is not new either, as a few years ago, Facebook’s CEO, Mark Zuckerberg, also faced the same allegations. Even if the app does end up getting banned, this could affect the first amendment of the U.S. Constitution, and the Supreme Court would have to decide on this.


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Rafaelle Cordero
Rafaelle Cordero, Freelancer
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