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TikTok Reportedly Monitored Users Who Watched Gay Content: Report

Last Updated: May 08, 2023, 03:29 IST

The US is concerned about Chinese-owned TikTok and lawmakers on both sides are mulling efforts to curtail its reach or ban the popular short video sharing app (Image: Reuters)

Former TikTok employees reveal that the app monitored users who watched gay content

Popular video-sharing application TikTok allegedly compiled a list of users monitored for watching gay content on the platform, according to a report by The Wall Street Journal.

As per the report, the controversial video-sharing app tracked users who engaged with clips related to LGBT topics, storing their viewing habits on a dashboard.

The employees, located in the US, UK, and Australia, reported the issue to top executives, according to The Journal. They expressed worries about the potential sharing of this information with external parties or its potential use for blackmail.

Similar to other social media companies, TikTok’s data practices have drawn criticism. TikTok emphasized its commitment to user privacy and security.

LGBT advocacy group GLAAD called for tech companies to protect user data and cease targeted surveillance advertising.

US lawmakers have raised concerns about TikTok’s handling of user data and its Chinese parent company’s connections to the ruling Communist Party, prompting calls to ban the app.

TikTok has faced bans in certain countries due to concerns about data access and influence by the Chinese government. TikTok’s head of US trust and safety, Eric Han, is set to depart the company.

In March, a cybersecurity firm discovered that TikTok’s parent company was tracking US state government websites.

The Biden administration has faced Republican opposition regarding TikTok, with calls for stricter measures against the Chinese app.

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