It’s been nearly six months since the first installment of the Twitter Files — the journalistic effort by Matt Taibbi, Michael Shellenberger, Bari Weiss, Lee Fang, and many others to expose the myriad channels by which the U.S government cooperated with Twitter on content moderation and censorship — was first published. Twitter Files One, perhaps the mildest of more than 20 unique reports, details the social media company’s internal deliberations in the days before the New York Post’s story about Hunter Biden’s laptop was removed from the site. Later reports have exposed the tendrils of a governmental apparatus that influenced some of the most significant media distortions in recent American history, from the fraudulent Hamilton 68 misinformation tracking dashboard to the FBI’s intimate involvement with Twitter’s content-moderation practices.Read More
TikTok Sues Montana over Total Statewide Ban
Chinese social media platform TikTok on Monday filed suit against a Montana law barring the platform from operating within the state and forbidding app marketplaces from offering it for download.
“We are challenging Montana’s unconstitutional TikTok ban to protect our business and the hundreds of thousands of TikTok users in Montana. We believe our legal challenge will prevail based on an exceedingly strong set of precedents and facts,” the company wrote in a complaint filed to the U.S. District Court for the District of Montana, per Politico.Read More
Commentary: Facebook’s TikTok Problem
TikTok hasn’t exactly got Facebook dancing in the streets.
The Chinese-owned social media app is rapidly eating away at Facebook’s user base, especially among the under-30s crowd, which seems to think that Facebook is for the over-the-hill crowd.Read More
Montana Becomes the First State to Completely Ban TikTok
Republican Montana Gov. Greg Gianforte signed a bill Wednesday that bans TikTok from the state, becoming the first one to completely outlaw the social media app.
The Montana Legislature introduced Senate Bill 419 in late February to respond to the increasing national concerns over TikTok’s ties with the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) and the fear the app could be used to steal sensitive information, according to the measure. SB419, sponsored by Montana Republican state Sen. Shelley Vance, passed the Legislature in April.Read More
TikTok’s Parent Company Allegedly Tracks Conversations About COVID-19 Lab Leak Theory: Report
Popular social media app TikTok’s Beijing-based parent company ByteDance might be tracking online conversations about the COVID-19 lab leak theory, according to documents obtained by Forbes.
A ByteDance tool controlled by Chinese personnel monitors the use of “sensitive words” across company platforms, according to a Forbes investigation. Forbes accessed hundreds of ByteDance’s word lists and published them; they contain various categories including “science and medicine,” which is largely about China and the COVID-19 pandemic.Read More
TikTok Continues Censorship of Think Tank’s Account Promoting Anti-CCP Documentary
TikTok continued to target a think tank criticizing the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) Thursday after removing and then reinstating posts without any explanation.
Acton Institute, an independent think tank that advocates for individual and religious liberty, was informed Tuesday that their account had been suspended but was given no reason for the decision. After Acton filed a complaint, TikTok reinstated the account but removed two videos promoting a documentary criticizing the CCP until they were also reinstated Thursday.Read More
TikTok ‘Trans Lesbian’ Threatens Christian Conservatives with Violence; Urges ‘Allies’ to ‘Arm Up’
In a “call to arms” posted onto TikTok, a user who goes by the name “Tara” and who identifies as a “poly trans lesbian” threatened Christian conservatives and urged fellow travelers to “arm up” to fight them in a recent rant on the Chinese-owned platform.Read More
Montana Lawmakers Vote to Ban TikTok Statewide
Montana lawmakers on Friday passed legislation to ban TikTok within the start and block downloads of the app entirely, becoming the first state in the nation to do so.
Both the federal government and numerous states have already barred the social media platform’s use on official devices, but those bans have stopped shy of outright forbidding the app on personal devices.Read More
Call to Ban TikTok on Personal Phones Gaining Momentum
About 30 states have placed restrictions on the social media app TikTok mostly related to government devices, but there is momentum for a larger ban on personal devices.
A growing number of lawmakers in the U.S. have raised national security concerns about the short-form video app because of TikTok’s ties to China through its parent company ByteDance.Read More
Hundreds of Former Federal Surveillance Officials Have Moved to Jobs in Big Tech
Over 200 former employees of federal surveillance agencies have since joined the corporate ranks of Big Tech companies in recent years, thus increasing the likelihood of systematic censorship of conservative accounts by such platforms.
According to the Daily Caller, the four social media companies Google, Twitter, Facebook, and TikTok have recruited 248 former employees from the FBI, CIA, Department of Justice (DOJ), and Department of Homeland Security (DHS), as proven by searches of the professional job listing and networking platform LinkedIn. The bulk of these hires were made between 2017 and 2022, with some of the former federal employees moving on to top executive positions within the social media companies.Read More
Commentary: Careful, The RESTRICT Act Could be Used to Censor Any Website in America, Not Just TikTok
S.686, the Restricting the Emergence of Security Threats that Risk Information and Communications Technology Act or the appropriately titled “RESTRICT Act” could be used to censor any website in America, not just TikTok.Read More
Commentary: Iowa U.S. Senator Joni Ernst Says Time Is Up for TikTok
Make no mistake about it, TikTok is an arm of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) propaganda machine living rent-free on the devices of 150 million Americans, and it’s putting our national security in jeopardy. This insidious app collects your data, surveils behavior, monitors user habits, and negatively influences our youth with an endless stream of addictive content.Read More
TikTok Not the Only China-Controlled App Thriving in America: Report
The top four downloaded applications in the past 30 days in the U.S. Apple App Store and Google Play Store are owned by Chinese-tied companies, according to data from Apptopia analyzed by Axios.
While these Chinese-tied apps are thriving in the U.S., American apps are typically not permitted to operate in China due to the country’s strict censorship, according to Axios. China has over one billion internet users according to Statista, so the U.S. is missing out on a massive market while China has exclusive access to it.Read More
TikTok CEO Dodges on Whether Company Will Cease ‘Spying’ on Americans
TikTok CEO Shou Chew dodged questions Thursday about whether tactics by parent company ByteDance used to “spy” on American journalists could be used to target more Americans.
House Energy and Commerce Committee Chairwoman Cathy McMorris Rodgers of Washington questioned Chew on reporting by Forbes that staff at ByteDance used TikTok data last year to surveil journalists who were covering the company, gaining access to their IP addresses to track whether they had been in proximity to ByteDance employees.Read More
TikTok Tracking Code Has Infected Many State Government Websites: Report
Tracking code created by TikTok’s parent company ByteDance Ltd. has been discovered in 30 state government websites, Feroot Security says, according to the Wall Street Journal.
This type tracking code, or “pixel” is commonly placed by website administrators to track the results of advertising on TikTok, the outlet reported. Using data gathered in January and February, Feroot Security revealed such pixels in 30 websites maintained by 27 states, some of which have banned TikTok from their government networks and devices.Read More
FBI, DOJ Investigating TikTok Parent over Surveillance of Americans: Report
The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the Department of Justice (DOJ) are investigating Chinese company ByteDance, the parent company of TikTok, for surveilling Americans, according to Forbes.
The DOJ Fraud Section and the Office of the U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia subpoenaed information from the company about its employees’ efforts to access the location and other private information of American journalists through TikTok, Forbes reported, citing an anonymous source. The FBI is conducting interviews on the same subject.Read More
Tennessee AG Skrmetti Leads 46 States to Demand China-Based TikTok Comply with Multistate Investigation
Forty-six attorneys general joined Tennessee in requesting that a state court force TikTok to comply with an ongoing multistate investigation into the platform’s impact on children.
Following TikTok’s failure to comply with a Request for Information (RFI) last week, Tennessee Attorney General Jonathan Skrmetti filed a motion Monday to require the Chinese-owned social media company to preserve documents and internal messages, his office announced. Colorado and 45 other states also filed an amicus brief Monday in support of Skrmetti’s motion, arguing that TikTok’s failure to respond impedes “the State’s ability to protect their citizens.”Read More
Federal Agencies Must Ban Chinese-Owned TikTok, White House Memo Says
Government agencies have less than a month to ban the popular Chinese-owned app TikTok from federal devices, according to an Office of Management and Budget memorandum issued Monday.
OMB Director Shalanda Young issued the memorandum for executive departments and agency heads about implementation guidance for banning TikTok on government-issued devices, Reuters first reported.Read More
European Union Commission Suspends TikTok Use on Work Devices
The European Union Commission on Thursday suspended the use of TikTok on work devices and EU employees’ personal devices that are used for work.
“This measure aims to protect the Commission against cybersecurity threats and actions which may be exploited for cyber-attacks against the corporate environment of the Commission,” the agency said.Read More
Lawmakers Re-introduce Bill to Ban TikTok in the United States
TikTok’s days in the United States could be numbered under a bipartisan bill re-introduced by the heads of congress’ new Committee on China.
Reps Mike Gallagher (R-WI-08) and Raja Krishnamoorthi (D-IL-08) on Friday submitted the legislation, which would ban the controversial video-sharing app from operating in the United States.Read More
NFL Lures Millions to TikTok Despite Rising Security, Privacy Concerns About the Chinese Platform
The Kansas City Chiefs and Philadelphia Eagles face off Sunday in the Super Bowl, but their competition extends beyond the gridiron to the social media stage, where the two teams are vying, along with the NFL’s other 30 franchises, for followers and engagement on TikTok, the controversial video-sharing app that reportedly has close ties to the Chinese Communist Party (CCP).
Although spy balloons are currently dominating the headlines, the wildly popular TikTok appears to be China’s premier Trojan Horse.Read More
Senator Calls for Apple, Alphabet to Boot TikTok from App Stores
A U.S. Senator has called on the nation’s top tech companies to break up with the popular short-form video service TikTok.
U.S. Senator Michael Bennet, D-Colorado, asked Apple CEO Tim Cook and Alphabet and Google CEO Sundar Pichai to remove TikTok from the company app stores immediately over national security concerns.Read More
Planned Parenthood Sex Educator Teaching Minors on TikTok to Use ‘Spicy Toys’ or Vegetables for Sexual Pleasure Under Fire
The work of a Planned Parenthood sex educator whose viral TikTok videos instruct children and young teens to use “spicy toys” and fruits and vegetables for sexual pleasure has been condemned by a former sex educator also trained by the abortion industry giant. Monica Cline, who, prior to her conversion, educated children as young as middle schoolers to engage in sex acts “safely,” said in comments sent to The Star News Network that Planned Parenthood sex educator and digital creator Mariah Caudillo is engaged in a “crime against children” paid for by American taxpayers.Read More
Despite Voting to Ban on Government Devices, Some U.S. Lawmakers Still Using TikTok
Some lawmakers are active on TikTok even after concerns about the social media platform’s surveillance capabilities prompted Congress to ban it on some federal devices in December.
The bipartisan omnibus spending bill passed on Dec. 23 prohibits TikTok on executive branch mobile devices, with limited carveouts for national security, law enforcement and research purposes. However, Democratic Reps. Ilhan Omar of Minnesota, Jamaal Bowman of New York, Cori Bush of Missouri and Rashida Tlaib of Michigan appear to be active on the platform, their accounts show, despite voting yes or “present” for the bill.Read More
Tennessee, Georgia, and Virginia Among 18 States Banning Social Media App TikTok from State Devices
Following South Dakota GOP Gov. Kristi Noem’s lead, nearly half of U.S. states have put restrictions on or banned the use of Chinese-based social media app TikTok.
At least 19 states have banned TikTok on government-issued devices – Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, Idaho, Iowa, Maryland, Montana, Nebraska, New Hampshire, North Dakota, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utha, Virginia and West Virginia.Read More
Universities Have Ban TikTok from School-Owned Devices
Several universities across the country have banned TikTok from campus-owned devices or wifi after their prospective states approved similar bans throughout the month.
Sixteen states have banned TikTok, a Chinese-owned company and alleged national security threat, from being used on state-owned devices, according to Government Technology. Four states have banned the app on “some” state-owned devices, while Republican Attorney General Todd Rokita of Indiana filed a lawsuit against the company for allegedly making false claims about its content.Read More
ByteDance Confirms Using TikTok to Monitor Journalists
An internal investigation from TikTok’s parent company, ByteDance, has confirmed that its employees used the social media app to track the physical locations of several journalists.
The investigation revealed that several employees had worked to uncover the source of internal leaks and in so doing had used the app to obtain the IP addresses and user data of journalists to determine their physical proximity to any ByteDance employees, according to Forbes.Read More
Commentary: Ohio PTA Reportedly Collaborates with TikTok
In late November, some Ohio parents received a brochure via snail mail detailing a workshop co-sponsored by their local PTAs and social media app TikTok.
Agendas for the event were included in the mailer but are also posted in media releases on the National PTA and TikTok websites dating back to 2019. “During the family workshops,” readers are told, “parents and teens will: Engage with a student panel about online safety and digital citizenship; Learn about available safety settings and privacy tools within TikTok; [and] Complete a guided activity together that helps illustrate why teens enjoy using TikTok for creative expression.”Read More
Auburn Bans TikTok from University Devices, WiFi
Days after Gov. Kay Ivey issued a memo banning TikTok from government devices, Auburn University announced its plans to prohibit the app as well.
On Wednesday, Auburn’s IT department sent out a notice saying the popular video-sharing app would be banned on campus WiFi and devices, according to AL.com. The IT department on Thursday tweeted a link to the new policy. However, that tweet has since been removed, and the school’s IT page posted an update Saturday saying, “Auburn is monitoring the developments related to accessing TikTok and will provide information as we receive it. Check back later for more information.”Read More
Wisconsin’s Gallagher and Illinois’s Krishnamoorthi File Bipartisan TikTok Ban Legislation
A bipartisan group of federal lawmakers this week filed legislation in the House of Representatives to ban the TikTok video-sharing application nationwide.
Congressmen Mike Gallagher (R-WI-8) and Raja Krishnamoorthi (D-IL-8) submitted their bill in the House of Representatives while Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) introduced companion legislation in his chamber. They call their measure the Averting the National Threat of Internet Surveillance, Oppressive Censorship and Influence, and Algorithmic Learning by the Chinese Communist Party Act (ANTI-SOCIAL CCP Act). It is written broadly enough to possibly prohibit use of other platforms operating under the influence of “a country of concern” such as China or Russia.Read More
Commentary: TikTok Needs to Be Destroyed
Twitter was a huge lie, but it was fun. Maybe it’s like television. Elon Musk is having a blast unveiling the conservative-hiding, progressive-promoting plot that was rising up in the complex engineering behind the little blue bird, which leads me to believe that the lovable little critter was actually a big monster. That liberals are outraged by the revelations only proves one thing: cancellation is their erotic dream and their nightmare is freedom. They already enjoyed the former too much. Now, it’s time for the latter.Read More
Chinese Operatives Ran a Massive TikTok Campaign to Help Dems in the Midterm Elections: Report
TikTok accounts operating as voices of Chinese state media promoted messages that appeared to denigrate Republican candidates and favor Democratic ones ahead of the 2022 midterm elections, according to a Forbes investigation.
While the Chinese-owned social media app has verbally affirmed the need to crack down on election disinformation and foreign interference, several news-oriented accounts failed to disclose their affiliation with Chinese Communist Party (CCP) state-owned media on the platform, Forbes found. The accounts racked up tens of millions views on posts that covered divisive topics, such as abortion and race, as well as critical clips that mostly targeted Republican candidates ahead of the 2022 midterms.Read More
House GOP Working on Bill to Ban TikTok Across Federal Government
The House Republican Conference is currently working on legislation that may ban the use of TikTok by federal government employees, the Daily Caller News Foundation has learned.
“We’re working on something right now,” said a Republican aide familiar with the matter. The proposal is said to be proceeding through the Judiciary Committee, which is set to be led by Republican Rep. Jim Jordan of Ohio in the next Congress when the GOP gains a majority.Read More
Kristi Noem Bans TikTok Use on South Dakota State Devices
Republican Gov. Kristi Noem of South Dakota issued an executive order banning the use of TikTok on Tuesday, according to a state press release.
The order prohibits any South Dakota state agency or government employee from downloading or using the TikTok application on a state-issued device, as well as from visiting the TikTok website. Additionally, it extends these prohibitions to any contractor and their personnel doing business with the state.Read More
Analysis: Trump Prevailed over Biden in Security Debate over Chinese Social App
Call it the tale of two TikTok presidents. In familiar fashion, Donald Trump was originally ridiculed as president when he suggested the Chinese-owned TikTok social video app was a national security risk, only now to be validated two years later by the intelligence community.
Meanwhile, Joe Biden vowed to always heed the intelligence community, only to stray by promoting TikTok during the midterms as a political strategy and allowing his administration to bring some TikTok workers to the United States on special immigrant visas.Read More
Commentary: For the Left, Politics Is a Full-Time Job
The midterm results were surprising. Dismal economic conditions and widespread public sentiment suggested a wave, and the Republicans did get more votes, but they barely won the House and failed to carry the Senate. There are reasons for all of this, including Democrat-friendly election procedures, but it is still very disappointing.
Republicans like to think of politics as something you do every few years in the same manner as nominal Christians who go to church on Christmas and Easter. When it comes to politics, the Left are the fundamentalists. For them, it is full-time, dictating what needs to happen with everything and everyone, everywhere.Read More
Chinese-Owned TikTok Using DHS Programs to Bring Foreign Workers to U.S.
ByteDance, the Chinese company that owns the video platform TikTok, is increasingly bringing foreign nationals to work in the U.S. through foreign worker programs overseen by the Department of Homeland Security, according to the Center for Immigration Studies.
This year alone, ByteDance was employing 579 foreign workers through the H-1B program, an increase from previous years, wrote Jon Feere, the center’s director of investigations, in a new report.Read More
FCC Member: ‘TikTok Is China’s Digital Fentanyl’
Federal Communications Commission member Brendan Carr said that TikTok is “China’s digital fentanyl” and that the social media platform is “a very sophisticated surveillance app.”
“At the end of the day, TikTok is China’s digital fentanyl,” Carr, a Republican and one of five FCC commissioners, said Friday on Fox News.Read More
White House Defends TikTok Outreach Amid Bipartisan Security Concerns
On August 9, 2021, Benito Skinner, the Millennial Generation comedian known online as “Benny Drama,” posted a video on TikTok of his day-in-the-life experience as a White House intern, photocopying, making unrequested nail appointments for then-Press Secretary Jen Psaki, and generally making a mess.
All of it was for laughs, but there was a reason the Biden administration invited him into the West Wing. They wanted Millennials and members of Gen Z to hear a public health message from the TikTok influencer: “We need to get shots in the arms of every single American.”Read More
‘Anarchist’ Middle School English Teacher Admits to Indoctrinating Children: ‘F**k the Parents’
Project Veritas (PV) released a new video from its Secret Curriculum series Monday, exposing a middle school English teacher from Tulsa, Oklahoma, who claims to be an “anarchist” who indoctrinates children against their parents with the ultimate goal of overthrowing the American system of government.
Tyler Wrynn is an eighth grade English teacher at Will Rogers Middle School. In the video, Wrynn is heard describing himself to the undercover PV journalist as “an anarchist.”Read More
TikTok Bans Political Fundraising Just Weeks Before Midterms
TikTok announced plans to ban all forms of campaign fundraising on its app Wednesday morning, just weeks ahead of midterm elections in the U.S.
In addition to this fundraising ban, which TikTok framed as an extension of existing policies that prohibit political advertising, the app is planning to offer verification to government officials, politicians and political parties to ensure users are aware of what content is made by public figures, according to TikTok’s press release. The announcement comes less than one week after a TikTok executive repeatedly refused to stop sending U.S. users’ data to China, and denied allegations in a bombshell Buzzfeed News report that employees in Chinese-based parent company ByteDance are able to see that data.Read More
TikTok Lawyer Says Left-Wing Nonprofit Offered Him $400 to Post Propaganda About Trump and January 6
An attorney with a popular TikTok account has exposed a corrupt left-wing influence operation that pays social media personalities to post disinformation about former president Donald Trump and January 6.
Atlanta-based attorney Preston Moore claimed on Saturday that he was offered $400 by the nonprofit “Good Information Foundation” to post manipulative “propaganda” ahead of the 2022 mid term elections.Read More
TikTok Executive Refuses to Stop Sending Data to China
A high-level TikTok executive repeatedly refused to stop sending American users’ data to China in a congressional hearing Wednesday, claiming that policies currently in development would be sufficient to satisfy America’s national security concerns.Read More
Researcher Claims TikTok Able to Track Users’ Keystrokes
New research from a former Google engineer warns TikTok has the ability to track user keystrokes in its Web browser, a claim that is alarming privacy advocates but receiving pushback from the platform’s parent company.Read More
TikTok’s Ties to Chinese Propaganda Machine Revealed
Three hundred employees at the parent company of ubiquitous social media app TikTok list Chinese state media outlets in their employment histories, a Forbes investigation of public LinkedIn profile information revealed Thursday.
The investigation may reveal Chinese Communist Party (CCP) ties to ByteDance, a Chinese technology company that operates several popular social media apps, through Chinese media organizations that generate CCP propaganda, according to Forbes. The profiles include 23 current directors of ByteDance responsible for “content partnerships, public affairs, corporate social responsibility and media cooperation,” and 15 who may still hold employment status with certain Chinese state-run media outlets, though it’s possible that the LinkedIn profiles were not updated after a change of job status.Read More
TikTok Intentionally Downplayed Ties to China, Documents Reveal
TikTok intentionally directed its staff to de-emphasize the app’s connection to Beijing, according to leaked internal documents acquired by Gizmodo.
TikTok’s public relations (PR) team was specifically instructed to “downplay the China association,” when asked about connections to the Chinese Communist Party, according to Gizmodo. The “Tik Master Messaging” and “TikTok Key Messages” documents reveal the company’s PR tactics during a time when ByteDance, the Chinese parent company of TikTok, came under attention from regulators, politicians and the media.Read More
Almost 60 Percent of Americans Want TikTok Banned from App Stores: Poll
Following reports of Chinese officials accessing U.S. user data, nearly 60% of Americans want social media app TikTok removed from app stores, according to a recent survey.Read More
Pro-Life Group Banned from TikTok After Viral Video Depicts Leader Confronting Woke Student with Her ‘Unscientific’ Pro-Abortion Logic
The nation’s largest organization of pro-life youth was censored by social media platform TikTok Monday after a video depicting Students for Life of America (SFLA) President Kristan Hawkins challenging a woke college student with the actual scientific facts about abortion went viral.
Hawkins called on TikTok to open the process for getting pro-life speech back on the app that contains significant abortion-related content.Read More
Washington Post Publishes Straight-Up Propaganda Piece Outing ‘Libs of TikTok’
Washington Post reporter Taylor Lorenz exposed the identity behind the “Libs Of TikTok” Twitter account in an article that widely characterized exposure of questionable school policy and problematic teacher-student interactions as “anti-LGBT.”
Rather than grapple with the issues the account brought to light — some of which resulted in discipline of teachers — Lorenz drew on interviews from left-wing activists at the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) and the left-wing organization Media Matters, who predictably supported the narrative that exposing controversial classroom instruction to the public at large essentially amounts to bigotry for the transgender and gay community.Read More
Biden White House Gives 30 TikTok Influencers a Briefing on Russia-Ukraine War
Dozens of TikTok “influencers” were given a White House briefing on the Russia-Ukraine war, Thursday, the Washington Post reported. In a Zoom call, National Security Council staffers and White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki reportedly provided to “30 top TikTok stars” the Biden administration’s talking points on “the United States’ strategic goals,” and answered a number of questions.
According to WaPo internet technology reporter Taylor Lorenz, “millions” of people are turning to the Chinese-owned social media app for information about what is going on in Ukraine.Read More