Black Tik Tok Creators Go On Strike

By Xion Abiodun

We all know that Black people are the creators of many things, including most viral tik tok dances. Since Megan Thee Stallions new song “Thot S***” came out, Black Tik Tok creators said that they won’t be creating any choreography to it, due to white kids getting all the credit, once they imitate these dances. For many centuries white people have been taking credit for the work Black people have done, and got away with it just because they are white. This has happened many times with Black content creators on Tik Tok, and because of this they decided to boycott from making dances to Megan’s new song, all together.

The boycott has been going on for a few weeks now and getting a lot of attention from major news sources. Non-Black Tik Tok creators are proving Black Tik Tok’s point by coming up with “dances”that aren’t nearly as creative, and popular as Black Tik Tok. Tik Tok has been getting more criticism since Jalaiah Harmon, a 14 year old Black girl made up the original viral dance “renegade”, but Addison Rae a white girl who is a popular Tik Tok creator with a larger following copied it, posted it, got all the credit for it. She even got to go on the Jimmy Fallon show for it. Since then, Jalaiah has gotten credit for her work, but the fact that Addison could just take her work, and act like it was her own for so long was not ok. 

Tik Tok has been called out for suppressing Black content creators work in the past, and since has apologized and promised to “do better”. But a report from NBC news has come out and said that when searching for dances on the app, created by Black creators, the app’s algorithm will show white creators copying them, instead of the original Black creators. Tik Tok released  a statement to the Guardian, claiming that they are working “to create a supportive environment for our community while also instilling a culture where honoring and crediting creators for their creative contributions is the norm. Tik Tok is a special place because of the diverse and inspiring voices of our community, and our Black creators are a critical and vibrant part of this.”

“The action was meant to make white creators rethink compensation, citation and ethical collaboration with Black creators on this and other social platforms”, said Amanda Bennet the co-founder of Define & Empower, and a spokesperson regarding the strike. She also said ​​“Black creators are tired of white people profiting off our work and appropriating Black culture,” she said. “We’ve seen the way older generations of Black creators have been disrespected and erased, and we aren’t having it any more.”

Since then white creators have been struggling to create content for the new viral song, most of the videos consist of them attempting to halfway dance, or mouthing lyrics.  Black creators decided to take a stand against Tik Tok, because they realized without them, the app wouldn’t nearly be as popular. They basically carry the app. Luckily the strike has been getting plenty of attention, and all we can do is hope things change soon. 


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