With TikTok, users create an account, perhaps search for some topics they're interested in, and are then presented with an essentially endless stream of short clips to watch. Once users interact with this content, perhaps by watching clips to their completion, liking videos, leaving comments, or sharing them with others, TikTok quickly and effectively figures out what other videos to recommend. These then present themselves in the "For You" stream. TikTok differs from many other social networks in that it doesn't run on a so-called social graph which recommends content to users based on who they follow, and instead on a content graph, which looks at other indicators such as how long people watched videos or otherwise engaged with them.To see how simple it is to buy various pieces of TikTok engagement, last week I uploaded my Warzone clip to TikTok, and then bought 250 followers from the website advertising the service. After specifying how many followers I wanted, providing my account name, and adding the item to my cart, I paid just over $12 via PayPal. The site also takes Paytr, Stripe, and other payment processors too for a cheaper price.
Do you work at TikTok? Did you used to? We'd love to hear from you. Using a non-work phone or computer, you can contact Joseph Cox securely on Signal on +44 20 8133 5190, Wickr on josephcox, OTR chat on firstname.lastname@example.org, or email email@example.com.
In a blog post published at the end of July, TikTok CEO Kevin Mayer wrote, "we believe all companies should disclose their algorithms, moderation policies, and data flows to regulators. We will not wait for regulation to come, but instead TikTok has taken the first step by launching a Transparency and Accountability Center for moderation and data practices. Experts can observe our moderation policies in real-time, as well as examine the actual code that drives our algorithms." On its website, TikTok says "Due to constraints as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, the physical opening of our Transparency and Accountability Center has been delayed. We look forward to being able to welcome guests in the near future in Los Angeles and at our upcoming Transparency and Accountability Center in Washington D.C.""TikTok is committed to protecting the safety, integrity and authenticity of our community," a TikTok spokesperson told Motherboard in an emailed statement. "We use a combination of technology-driven security controls and human review to mitigate spam and fraud on our platform, including purchasing followers or likes, which is a violation of our Community Guidelines, and we take swift action against accounts that break our terms of service. Understanding that spam and fraud are evolving industry-wide threats, TikTok will continue investing in solutions to strengthen our security infrastructure and stay ahead of these challenges."In the days after purchasing the 1,000 likes, TikTok appears to have suspended some of the accounts. "This account was banned due to multiple Community Guidelines violations," a banner on top of the impacted accounts now reads. Most of the accounts appear to be still active however, and the video itself still displays a like counter of over 1,000.The video of another user who had many of the suspicious accounts following them says, "Can I be TikTok famous yet."Subscribe to our cybersecurity podcast, CYBER.
"Can I be TikTok famous yet."