We all know Lizzo as the genius behind some of our favorite self-love anthems including “Truth Hurts” and “Good As Hell.” But what you may not know is that she’s actually pretty popular on the video-sharing app TikTok, too. And after sharing several viral challenges and behind-the-scenes videos from the studio, Lizzo hit up the social media platform yesterday (March 3) when she noticed that some of her posts — specifically the ones of her in her bathing suit — had been removed from the app entirely.
“TikTok keeps taking down my videos with me in my bathing suits but allows other videos with girls in bathing suits,” the 31-year-old artist wrote. “I wonder why? TikTok… we need to talk.” All the while, the “Juice” singer was lip-syncing to one of TikTok’s viral sounds that repeats the words “I know,” hinting she already knows the answer.
♬ iknowiknowiknowiknow – erin_mcmillen
Lizzo isn’t the first person to suggest that TikTok has been unequally removing posts. In December 2019, a report from the German site NetzPolitik.org alleged that in an attempt to lessen online bullying, “the platform instructed its moderators to mark videos of people with disabilities and limit their reach.” The report also said that LGBTQ+ and fat people were marked as being some of the groups susceptible to bullying, as well.
First, The Guardian reported in December that posts were being censored, not fully taken down. Some videos, for example, weren’t viewable outside of the country in which they were posted. Others were said to have been blocked from being featured on the “For You” page, which is essential if users want to skyrocket to viral TikTok fame.
While TikTok did own up to censoring posts on the app in its beginning stages, they told The Verge that those policies were only temporary. “Early on, in response to an increase in bullying on the app, we implemented a blunt and temporary policy,” a spokesperson told The Verge. “While the intention was good, the approach was wrong and we have long since changed the earlier policy in favour of more nuanced anti-bullying policies and in-app protections.”
So, what happened? Unfortunately, that’s only an answer TikTok has provided, and it’s safe to say Lizzo fans on the app aren’t happy. “Oh wow! Wouldn’t think they’d pull videos from stars,” one user wrote in the comments. And after one fan wrote that the the app has “been caught doing this to so many people,” hundreds of other fans posted comments alleging that their content, much like hers, has been subject to removal, too.
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