The role that TikTok can play in the outcome of the US elections
The war declared by Trump in the popular application and the "crazy" money that those who deal with it earn
Lately United States they seem to be sinking more and more into violence and bloodshed. Police violence against African Americans has served as a trigger and what seemed to be simmering for a long time now seems to be at its peak.
Many analysts, however, say that what we are seeing now is not the climax of the drama but a small… trailer of what follows.
A turning point seems to be the elections next November. The estimates are many and varied. But they all have a bleak future for the most powerful state on the planet.
And in all this seemingly (and) explosive climate, a "war" declared by US President Donald Trump on a social networking platform seems out of place, as this app seems to be the most " innocent "from all the others (Facebook, Twitter etc) that exist in our lives.
But is that so? It can TikTok to influence the election result in the US or once again Trump is looking to find an enemy?
To understand why the mighty planetary leader started a "war" against a social networking platform, one must understand the numbers that accompany TikTok and certainly do not leave anyone indifferent.
Can something as simple as a 15- to 60-second video cause as much… loss around its name? Judging by TikTok obviously and can.
Launched in September 2016, Chinese internet technology company ByteDance has developed the Douyin app for the domestic market. A year later he launched TikTok for shopping abroad China. The app, however, became available worldwide in the summer of 2018, following the acquisition by ByteDance of Musical.ly, an already successful short video creation app in which users sang and danced. The two merged and all the accounts of the former were integrated into the latter, which already had more than 120 million users.
Already in the first months of 2018, TikTok became the application with the most downloads in the App Store, surpassing Facebook, the Instagram etc.
The first quarter of 2020 reached 1,5 billion downloads and its users are estimated at 800 million, while it is expected to exceed 1 billion by the end of the year.
It is available in more than 150 countries and its users are under 34 years old - 26% are between 18 and 24 years old. On average, an average user spends about 52 minutes a day on the app, and you do not need to create a user account to download and browse the app.
His popularity skyrocketed during it lockdown, when billions of little ones were forced to stay home and exhausted their creativity and imagination by performing choreographies, participating in challenges, sharing comments and answers to friends and groups.
Of course, TikTok has its own stars, who earn tens of thousands of dollars for each video they post. At the top of the list of top TikTokers is American Charlie D 'Amelio, with 76,2 million followers and revenue of $ 48.000 / post, followed by Addison Rae, with 53,7 million followers and earnings of $ 35.000 / post, Zach King, with 46,7 million followers and $ 41.000 / post, and Loren Gray, with 46,1 million followers and $ 42.000 / post.
As can be easily understood, the mere fact that the popular application has Chinese origins is enough in itself to put it in Trump's sights and now be another piece of the geopolitical "puzzle" between the two superpowers.
The beginning was made last time when US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo stated that users' personal data is in danger of falling into the hands of the Chinese Communist Party!
A few days later the US rhetoric was upgraded after more or less saying the same the US president, who, among other things, warned that he was oriented towards banning TikTok in the US. A few days ago, he gave a 45-day deadline to American companies to cut off all cooperation with the "mom" company ByteDance, citing national security reasons and starting a new episode in the trade and technological war raging between the two countries.
Trump claims that the Chinese state could force the company to hand over the personal data of American citizens, something that (although he did not say so, he meant it) could affect the outcome of the election.
For its part, ByteDance replies that the data is not stored in Chinese territory and assures that it would not comply with such requirements. However, what seems to have calmed down the always unpredictable Trump a bit is that the company is in talks to acquire TikTok from Microsoft, a development that the American president seems to see with a good eye.
Somewhere here, however, the "game" began to become strange and complicated because, in the current climate of tension in the US, some considered it a good idea to use the platform to send their own anti-Trump messages in a humorous way through their short videos. .
The problem for the US president is that these videos are watched by millions of young people who are likely to remember them and vote accordingly when it is time to go to the polls.
All this in turn, feeds back his rhetoric Donald Trump who "shows" these analyzes by indirectly but clearly emphasizing that "here, China and its Communist Party are trying to influence the American elections."
This creates new humorous videos against Trump and the vicious cycle continues without seeming to be able to put an end to it.