Is TikTok a reliable source for news?

The average person who has TikTok spends more than 50 minutes per day on it.

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The average person who has TikTok spends more than 50 minutes per day on it.

Angelina Wilson, Editor

Since TikTok was released in 2016, it has quickly become the most popular social media platform. With around 1 billion people watching short 30 second videos every month. According to Pew Research Center, an unbiased fact tank for recent issues, 71% of Americans get at least some of their news from social media, with TikTok being the go to app. So the question is, should Americans be listening to random people on the internet?

The first obvious answer is no, schools tell students to do their own research when they want to know something. To confirm it with other sources, and asking adults that you trust. However, social media will not necessarily give the wrong content. It’s about finding unbiased content. Leonora Ritter, a member of Charles Sturt University, believes that users should make their own decisions on what content they believe is sincere.

It depends on what your question is. If you are seeking information about opinions that are held or the way people use social media then it may be a valid source. But generally any source that is not peer reviewed can only give you an opinion. Having said that, you are in a position to evaluate for yourself the validity of an argument and the reliability of supporting evidence,” said Ritter. 

With TikTok, users have to realize that videos are tailored to each individual’s own tastes. Tatum Weiss, a junior chemistry major, mentions that prejudice occurs with political videos.

“If you’re one side leaning politically, it’s going to filter the content it shows you towards that side. If you like a bunch of videos about one topic it’s going to show you more of the same exact thing, not any of the counterarguments, “ Weiss said.

When looking for the right information, looking at all parts of the topic is a part of research. It’s easier to agree with one’s own opinions, however it is important to keep an open mind. Looking at different perspectives can also give completely different information.