On June 2nd, according tomedia reports, the short video app TikTok, the international version of The Sound, came under fire for marking the video playback volume of the hashtags “BlackLivesMatter” and “George Floyd” as zero. In response, TikTok rushed to explain the reasons monday, and apologized.
#BlackLivesMatter也即Black Lives Matter, which means “black lives are also lives.” George Floyd, a black man from Minneapolis, died after being violently enforced by a white American police officer.
Users accused TikTok of censoring and suppressing black voices during protests across the United States triggered by the death of George Freud.
Some TikTok users changed their profile picture to black fists symbolizing black power, calling on other users to protest TikTok’s “unfair censorship of black creators.”
“We offer our gratitude and apologies to black creators and communities who feel unsafe, unsupportive, or suppressed,” said vanessa Pappas, general manager of TikTok USA, and kudzi Chikumbu, the creator’s community director, in a blog post. “
But the company said it did not review posts and that the alleged video playback was marked as zero because of a display problem caused by a technical glitch that affected a wide range of labels. In fact, according to TikTok, the video, labeled “BlackLivesMatter,” has generated more than 2 billion views.
“We understand that many believe that this mistake was a deliberate act to suppress expression and to attack the feelings of the black community. “So we know that we have a lot of work to do to restore and repair trust in us,” Pasands and Chikumbu wrote in the blog post. “
TikTok said it would set up a special committee to hear voices and would donate $3 million to nonprofits that help black communities, as well as $1 million to fight racial injustice and inequality in the United States. The company also said it would turn off some of the app’s sound features on Tuesday in solidarity with the music industry’s “Black Out Tuesday” protest.
Kevin Mayer, who took over as chief executive of TikTok only last month, said, “In the weeks, months and years, ask our community to monitor our actions.” “
TikTok has previously been criticized by users for censorship issues, including videos by people with disabilities, gays and related creators.