My best friend told me getting on TikTok would be a good idea. Why, you ask? “You have so much to say!”
And I do.
Yet when I joined TikTok in September-October 2020 (at the first wave of COVID-19), right before the 2020 Presidential Election, I found my niche in social justice (Social Justice Tok), and there I remain 4 accounts later.
Reported videos begat bans, begat trolls, begat mass reporting and that pulling down of a platform I built within a year.
It took my breath away when I logged in my account and it was…gone! I felt like my voice had been ripped from me.
It felt like a digital launching.
From that realization, and being the student of history, I came up with the phrase social media lynching. I define it as:
(c) September 2021, JBHarris
The practice of suppressing the content/voices of minority people (especially African-American people) who actively use their voices or position to fight racism, discrimination, erasure, on a social platform only to be banned (silenced) or have their content suppressed, accounts taken or platform sanctioned.
I wasn’t shocked. I was not mad. I got real focused and made a backup plan. And backup pages.
I looked for a pattern to my banned videos and the patterns to bans to other accounts I followed. I saw these 4 things:
1.) Problematic comments filled with whatever a la carte -phobia or -ism.
2.) You check the comment; arguments ensure in the comments.
3.) These comments persist for days and someone reports the video or comment–or both.
4.) All other like videos are flagged (reported).
If you make enough noise, you get this on your account:
Then, you’re a cool kid.