TikTok has faced a lot of scrutiny from politicians and different governments across the globe but it’s now time for it to stand on its legs and scrutinize politicians.
The first step it’s taking in order to achieve this is by requiring accounts belonging to US government departments, political parties, and politicians to be verified while also banning videos aimed at fundraising.
The company’s reason for the drastic action is to clamp down on political misinformation ahead of the US midterm elections which will happen in November.
Moving forward, political accounts will need to be submitted upon request for verification while the company will work to confirm the authenticity of those profiles that it believes belong to political parties or politicians.
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Accounts that are verified will get the usual “blue check” mark which indicates the account is authentic and it’s been confirmed.
TikTok has been accused of its ties with the Chinese government in the past which almost led to a forceful sale of the company during the previous Trump administration leading to many American companies opting to purchase parts of the company.
The platform is known for its short-form portrait videos where mostly young people can be seen lip-syncing songs and making skits of different forms.
The app has also sought to preserve its image as a place for dance videos and comedy skits, and has banned political advertising since 2019.
In order to enforce the ban, accounts belonging to politicians and parties will be automatically prevented from accessing advertising features, said TikTok in a blog post.
The company said it will make some amendments to its policies in order to prohibit campaign fundraising.
Also, content that will be banned under the new policy includes videos from politicians soliciting donations or political parties directing users to make a donation on their website.
The accounts will also be prohibited from using money-making features available to influencers on the app, like digital payments and gifting.