TikTok shows new user Nazi videos within an hour and a half

Anyone who creates a new account on TikTok will be presented with extreme right-wing videos and even Nazi propaganda within an hour and a half.

This is according to research by the US parliamentary committee of inquiry into how the storming of the US Capitol could have happened in early 2021. It is suspected that social media played a major role in the realization of that storm. This study specifically looked at TikTok, which has recently come under fire for its moderation rules.

A fictitious TikTok user was created for the study: Alice, age 41, with no stated interests, writes Rolling Stone, which has accessed the study. After 75 minutes of random scrolling on TikTok, “Alice” had already gotten caught up in videos about Donald Trump, the right-wing culture war, and outright Nazi videos.

TikTok is increasingly under fire

According to the committee, the limited research nevertheless indicates that TikTok and its algorithm “lead users through traps to potentially harmful content”. According to the parliamentary committee of inquiry, the company has the greatest difficulty in moderating such misleading and harmful videos.

If TikTok does crack down on such videos, it would again be accused of censorship. The company declined to comment on the investigation to Rolling Stone. A year ago, similar research was done by disinformation fighter NewsGuard. It turned out that a new TikTok account was already being presented with untruths about Ukraine a few minutes after registration.

Concerns about ties with China

The Chinese TikTok is the fastest-growing social platform in recent years. At first only among young people, now people in their twenties and thirties are increasingly addicted to TikTok. However, critics suspect close ties to the Chinese government. The company is also accused of secretly tracking the location of critical journalists in order to detect leaks within its own company.

The US and Europe are already investigating TikTok and in the Netherlands, the Christen Unie has already argued for a ban.

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