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TikTok admits to banning US teen for posting political videos

stuff: TikTok has acknowledged they had made an error in penalising a 17-year-old who had posted witty but incisive political videos, promising it would restore her ability to access her account on her personal device.

The company’s apology – coupled with a new pledge to re-evaluate its policies – still failed to satisfy the teen, Feroza Aziz, who again raised concerns that she’d been the victim of censorship by the fast-growing, Chinese-owned social-media app.

“TikTok is trying to cover up this whole mess,” she told The Washington Post. “I won’t let them get away with this.”

The saga started earlier this week, when Aziz tweeted that her profile had been temporarily suspended.

She attributed the penalty to the fact she had recently shared a satirical video that urged viewers to research the harrowing conditions facing Muslims in China’s detention camps.

Her comment quickly garnered widespread attention because TikTok is owned by a China-based tech conglomerate, ByteDance, though the company has sought to stress recently its US operations are independent from Beijing’s strict censorship rules.

TikTok, however, said it had penalised her not for her comments about China but rather a video she’d shared earlier – a short clip, posted on to a different account, that included a photo of Osama bin Laden.

Aziz’s video violated the company’s policies against terrorist content, TikTok said, so the company took action against her device, making any of her other accounts unavailable on that device.

TikTok said her videos about China did not violate its rules, had not been removed and had been viewed more than a million times.

But the video in question – a copy of which she shared with The Washington Post – actually was a comedic video about dating that the company had misinterpreted as terrorism, Aziz said.

By Wednesday evening, TikTok had reversed course: The company said it restored her ability to access her account on her personal device. TikTok also acknowledged that her video about China had been removed for 50 minutes on Wednesday morning, which it attributed to a “human moderation error.”

“We acknowledge that at times, this process will not be perfect. Humans will sometimes make mistakes, such as the one made today in the case of @getmefamouspartthree’s video,” wrote Eric Han, the head of safety at TikTok US, referring to Aziz’s account.

“When those mistakes happen, however, our commitment is to quickly address and fix them, undertake trainings or make changes to reduce the risk of the same mistakes being repeated, and fully own the responsibility for our errors,” Han continued.

In doing so, TikTok for the first time offered detail about the actions it has taken to police its platform: In November, the company said, it banned 2,406 devices associated with accounts that violated rules about terrorism, child exploitation or spam. It was part of that sweep that Aziz’s own device had been banned, locking her out of her account there.

Aziz, however, said late Wednesday she isn’t convinced.

“Do I believe they took it away because of a unrelated satirical video that was deleted on a previous deleted account of mine? Right after I finished posting a 3 part video about the Uyghurs? No,” she tweeted Wednesday.

TikTok’s policies have drawn critical attention in Washington, where investigations have begun into whether the platform presents a national security risk.

Source: Published by stuff

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Fatima Abdullahi
Fatima Abdullahi
1 month ago

Very good

Anyadike Rosesandra
Anyadike Rosesandra
1 month ago

This is very good, once a law is made it should be passed out..You can’t validate a law and expect to go unpunished

stanley
stanley
30 days ago

No one is above the law

Tosin ogunsuyi
Tosin ogunsuyi
27 days ago

It is good development

Okwu ebenezer chibundo
Okwu ebenezer chibundo
26 days ago

That’s a good way of enforcing their policies
Imagine Facebook doing the same thing to people who voiates their policy

Chika wisdom
Chika wisdom
23 days ago

No body is perfect and above the law too

Ojeah John Ekene
Ojeah John Ekene
20 days ago

Good enforcement of policy. when a policy is made, no one should go against it.

Akabueze Ugochukwu
Akabueze Ugochukwu
16 days ago

That’s is better for them

Sunday Bose
Sunday Bose
15 days ago

Very good. I think this teach them a lesson

Ibeanusi chinonso Samuel
Ibeanusi chinonso Samuel
15 days ago

What the company did was bad why will they remove her video without telling her and what are they hiding… there act is very suspecious

Abashiya Wilfred Tanko
Abashiya Wilfred Tanko
13 days ago

That was one good decision I think other social media should also try that to such kind of people

Ohia Eberechi Anita
Ohia Eberechi Anita
13 days ago

China thrives on dictatorship.
Always trying to cover up their silly schemes.

Matthew chinedu
Matthew chinedu
13 days ago

No one is above the law he should be jailed

JOSEPH VICTOR MOSES
JOSEPH VICTOR MOSES
9 days ago

That is nice it will encourage some of youth posting nonsense God bless you more

Muritala Olatunji
Muritala Olatunji
8 days ago

That is a very good one.

Uche chinedu
Uche chinedu
4 days ago

Aziz should have obeyed the law of tiktok

Uche chinedu
Uche chinedu
4 days ago

He shouldn’t have done any video with political issue

Juliet Success
Juliet Success
15 hours ago

Good ! Its a good way of enforcing law and order. No one is above the law