TikTok ratings crashed from 4.6 on the Playstore to 2 shortly after a controversy arose between Youtube influencer Carry Minati and TikTok influencer Faizal Siddiqui.
The video sharing app has been rendered as one of the most successful start-ups in recent times. In India alone, it sees 200 million active users every month. However, TikTok ratings dropped to an all-time low as many of its users asked for it to be banned.
Three reasons that led to the fall in TikTok ratings
1. YouTube vs. TikTok
The verbal battle of satires and roasts between influencers on YouTube and TikTok has been going on for quite some time now. However, things quickly went down when a video entitled “YouTube vs TikTok: The End” went viral and was later taken down.
As a start, Siddiqui posted a video accusing YouTubers of copying ideas from the short video platform. Minati, who is a popular Youtuber, then published the aforementioned video in response roasting Siddiqui.
It soon got viral and had over 70 million views when it was struck down by YouTube on May 14 for violating its terms of service. However, things didn’t end there. Minati’s fans took on themselves to take down TikTok and went on to leave one-star reviews for TikTok.
Furthermore, another controversy emerged when Minati was criticised for his comments on homosexuals and transgender community. However, the YouTuber clarified that his comments were being used out of context. As he asked his fans for support, netizens began the hashtag trend of #BringBackCarryMinatiYoutubeVideo and continue to leave one-star ratings for TikTok.
2. TikToker Endorses Acid-Attacks
Before the YouTube vs. TikTok could end, another TikTok star lent the platform it’s another controversy. Siddiqui’s brother Faizal Siddiqui further escalated the matter with his short video glorifying acid attacks on women.
The video suffered criticism and backlash from a large section of the audience. The outspoken acid attack survivor Laxmi Aggarwal, who is known for her activism against acid attacks, also published a short video criticising it.
Shortly after, the video was taken down from TikTok and Faizal’s official TikTok account has been suspended as well. However, Faizal defended his video citing misinterpretation. He posted on his Instagram, “My intention was never to hurt anyone in any capacity. As a social media influencer, I realise my responsibility and apologise to anyone who was offended by the video.”
3. Offensive and Abusive Content on TikTok
Moreover, the current outrage against the app has also given an opportunity to others to voice their criticism adding more fuel to the fire. Even in the past, TikTok has come under scrutiny for disturbing graphics and visuals on its platform. Notably, the app also hosts a large number of underage users which makes the availability of this content even more concerning.
Furthermore, it is also worth noting that the app has already been banned by various Indian states when it was reported to promote derogatory and abusive content on the platform. However, after several assurances and change in policies, TikTok eventually returned to the Play Store. Despite criticism, the app continues to have over 200 million users in the country.
But, in light of several such incidents many have asked for a complete ban on the Chinese social media site. However, there are others who have argued that it isn’t an issue of technology but inherent cultural problems of our society. Many have even warned that banning an app for cultural issues can be counterproductive instead.
TikTok had granted parental controls in the past but it could not lead to much improvement in the situation. As extreme fan culture and misuse of the platform surfaces, it would be worth observing how both the app and government will deal with the situation.