300 Employees At TikTok Earlier Worked With Chinese State Media: Report
Three hundred current employees at TikTok and its parent company ByteDance previously worked for Chinese state media publications, according to LinkedIn employee profiles reviewed by Forbes.
Twenty-three of these profiles appear to have been created by current ByteDance executives, who manage divisions that oversee content partnerships, public affairs, corporate social responsibility, and corporate social responsibility. “communication cooperation”.
Fifteen current ByteDance employees are also simultaneously employed by Chinese state media, including Xinhua News Agency, China Radio International, and Central/China Global Television. . (These organizations are among those designated by the State Department as “foreign government authorities” in 2020)
Fifty profiles represent employees who work for or on TikTok, including a director of content strategy who was formerly Chief Correspondent for Xinhua News Agency.
LinkedIn profiles reviewed by Forbes show significant links between TikTok’s parent company, ByteDance, and the propaganda arm of the Chinese government, which has invested heavily in using the social network to spread the word. disinformation in the service of the Chinese Communist Party. China’s state-run media have a large presence on platforms like Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, but so far they’ve been pretty quiet on TikTok.
ByteDance and TikTok do not dispute that the 300 LinkedIn profiles represent current employees or deny their connections to Chinese state media. According to Forbes, none of the state media featured in this story responded to requests for comment.
Jennifer Banks, a spokeswoman for ByteDance, said that ByteDance makes “hiring decisions based purely on an individual’s professional ability to do the job. For our China market businesses, includes those who have previously worked in state or government media positions in China.Outside of China, staff also bring experience in government, public policy and media organisations. from dozens of markets.”
Responding to 15 filings showing ByteDance employees were also employed by Chinese state media, she added that ByteDance “does not allow employees to hold a second or part-time job, or any other business activity.” outside business, this could create a conflict of interest.”
Nowadays, people spend more time on TikTok than any other app. In recent months, the app has been hailed as a powerful force in American culture and is quickly emerging as a staple of our electoral and civic discourse.
The LinkedIn profile raised further concerns that China could use TikTok’s vast cultural influence in the US for their own ends, a fear that has prompted a group of American politicians, including former president Donald Trump, called for the app to be banned in 2019.
Meanwhile, citing that TiktTok was providing user data to the Chinese government, the British Parliament closed its TikTok account, media reports said.
The UK Parliament has closed its TikTok account after several members of Parliament sanctioned by China raised concerns about data security, Politico reported. Just six days after opening the account, congressional authorities confirmed they had deactivated the profile on the social network.
(Except for the title, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from an aggregated feed.)