TikTok blocked the account of an American who, in a popular video disguised as a training video about makeup, criticized China for repressing Uighurs. However, the company said that it was blocked due to a video about Osama bin Laden on another account. This was reported by BuzzFeed News.
On November 23, a 17-year-old Muslim woman, Feroza Aziz from New Jersey, published in her TIkTok a video about eyelash curling, in which she unexpectedly started criticizing re-education camps in China, where Uyghurs are forcibly detained.
So, first you need to take a curler and obviously curl your eyelashes. Then you should put them and take your phone to look for information about what is happening in China. There are concentration camps where innocent Muslims are detained, their families are separated, kidnapped, killed, raped, forced to drink alcohol and eat pork, forcibly converted to a different faith. This is another Holocaust, but no one talks about it.
In China, camps are called voluntary “educational centers.” However, often the government of the country is accused of mass illegal imprisonment of thousands of Uyghurs, Kazakhs, Kyrgyz and representatives of other nationalities professing Islam or Christianity. The media suggest that more than a million people have passed through the camps.
On November 25, Aziz’s account was blocked in TikTok and denied access to the application on her smartphone. On November 27, after a resonance in social networks and materials in the media, the company issued a detailed statement about the situation where it apologized to Aziz for blocking and announced the restoration of her account.
TikTok stated that the video of the repression against the Uighurs was deleted by mistake and restored after 50 minutes. However, the girl did not believe this. “It still seems suspicious that they deleted this particular video. Sounds improbable, ”she told BuzzFeed News.
In October, the US Congress raised the question of whether TikTok poses a risk to the country’s national security, and asked intelligence to conduct an assessment of such risks for the state. In response, the company said it never removes content related to China: “The Chinese government has never asked us to delete anything. Even if asked, we would refuse to do this. And the point. “
TikTok said that Aziz’s current account was blocked due to a “sexually-charged” video with a joke about Osama bin Laden, which the girl posted on her previous account on November 14. She told BuzzFeed News that the video did not “sexualize” the former al-Qaeda leader, but simply was a variation of the popular meme on the social network.
The girl explained the joke: “In TikTok there is a trend where you publish photos of guys or girls that you liked in childhood. Mine was in the spirit of “I liked the white guys, and now they are dark”, and in the end, I added bin Laden for a humorous effect. It was black humor, because no girl in her right mind would say that. ”
Aziz contacted the representatives of TikTok, but could not find out why it was blocked. Later, in a statement, the company said that the video about bin Laden violates the user agreement, so the girl was blocked both the first account and access to the social network from her smartphone.
On the same day, November 14, Aziz created a new account, where she posted a video about the repression of the Uyghurs in China. Since November 25, Aziz could not enter the new account. TikTok explained that the girl’s smartphone has become one of 2,406 banned devices due to communication with previously blocked profiles. However, such a coincidence seemed suspicious to her.
Aziz told the publication that her accounts and videos are not being deleted for the first time. She believes that other users complain about her content: “Several videos related to Muslim content were deleted from my last profile. This is how TikTok works. People constantly complain about everything. ”
Aziz emphasizes that she is annoyed by the constant blockages for her jokes: “Many people use black humor. TikTok publishes content about murders and very tough things. And it is not removed. I just create videos that Muslims and dark people can laugh at. And this is being deleted. ”
However, she is glad that she was able to disseminate information about human rights violations in China: “As a Muslim woman, I was often oppressed, and I saw how my people were oppressed. I knew about the crisis since 2018, but when I talked about it, no one listened. So I decided to make this video in TikTok. I hope I can do more. “