“TikTok poses an unacceptable national security risk due to its extensive data harvesting being combined with Beijing’s apparently unchecked access to that sensitive data.” – Federal Communications Commission (FCC)

This is true.

Now replace TikTok with Facebook, Snapchat, <insert Silicon Valley Big Tech corporation or startup here> and Beijing with Washington, DC and…

This is also true.


@aral "national security risk"?? 🤔 Oh what a bullshit... Just another try to sink another site so centralized medias can survive and control everything.... Or maybe chance for #goldfish by @stux to replace #TikTok 😆 Why not

@abid @aral ShitTok is reaaally toxic with its Chinese owner..! The gov can request data from anyone they like in China from companies so yess it IS a HUGE security risk!

@stux @aral Any gov in any country can request data for "some" security reasons. Same happen to #Telegram even they trey to ignore it...

@abid @stux @aral Abid is completely right. Companies must comply with whatever the local laws are.

@theavidhorizon @abid @aral And that's the point here.. :blobcatgiggle:

Since it's based in 'super mega free' China with users world wide everyone using it is at risk

@stux @abid @aral I got the point, trust me. I was taking a jab at the security theatre folk. There are people out there who use software and expect that companies won't turn on their users. They turn on them for profit, let alone when the law compels them to. This is doubly true in places like China where business is directly owned/controlled by the state.

Whether china or free world, there is no privacy or secrecy. It's an illusion.

@stux @abid @aral My own government, the US GOVERNMENT IS THE ONLY risk to my security. Cyber or otherwise. Bye

@aral @stux @abid ofc. But for best results focus on our OWN $cum leaders. It gives those 'embattled' people the media tells us all about some 'breathing room' to 'deal' with their own, without interference by other govts and people with ulterior motives interfering... IF THEY CARE TO ... If they don't then those external forces are Unfriendly and Hostile to what "Self-determination" implies. That's true for Donbass and Lugansk too, btw. No self-respecting Anarchist should oppose those people's wishes.

@aral @stux @abid Caitlin Johnstone said it best. Close paraphrase: 'If you ever find yourself siding with US government foreign policy, you're wrong. It doesn't mean the other side is right, but you're still wrong'

@jaryl @stux @abid You’re missing the point. The problem isn’t the Chinese owner. The problem is the surveillance and the data gathered and that other people have it and will use it against you. For TikTok, it’s the people who run TikTok and the Chinese government (and yes, the Chinese government is about as problematic as it gets but that’s not the point here because so is every government to one degree or other). For Facebook it’s Zuck & co. and the US government, etc., etc., etc.

I was briefly involved in plans to make a TikTok experience for the Fediverse and there was a ton of money behind it so it wouldn't have been a problem to build, but the biggest hurdle was actually the music. TikTok and Instagram have awesome features that people love using licensed music and if you tried to replicate it on the Fediverse you're just asking for trouble.

The rest of the features aren't so hard. Lots of brilliant app devs out there and video toolkits for making filters etc and of course the bandwidth/storage requirements grow considerably for a video-focused experience, but it's still possible to build.

You just don't want to get involved in the copyrighted media shenanigans. It's a giant target on your back.

So unless you can convince people that these types of features are not fun, you will never pry corporatized social media out of the hands of the masses

@aral @stux @abid if you look objectively at where our data is going it is mostly to US companies, both software and hardware, even if the latter is increasingly supply-chained by China.

All the evidence of our data being used against us, shown by Snowden, has been US companies and the US government, see Cisco (and I dare you to compare it to Huawei). If you live outside the Chinese firewall, your threat model really does not include the Chinese government.

@abid @stux Not bullshit at all. Again, however, consider that if the US considers TikTok a security risk. What should we (in Europe and elsewhere) be considering Facebook, SnapChat, etc.

@abid @stux * with apologies for the unforgivable lack of proof-reading :)

@aral This is very much true with most of the Social Media platforms. Still, without a more secured and privacy-centered alternative, it will be just the same old story - big companies collecting data without consent and making bucks from it.

@Internxt @aral Now that I think about it, I believe that maybe a do-it-all platform, or even protocol is a problem. The slow internet might be a success because it articulates different imperfect protocols, with different constraints, instead of doing everything in a web browser.

Honestly, there weren’t even retweets in the beginning on Twitter, just links to someone else’s tweet, and they seem to implement every common user practice (see QRTs) in the most anti-user possible manner. They’ve implemented retweets in a manner (BSR) to keep users hooked, and in this specific context, because Twitter users know that notifications trigger such an intimate, cerebral reaction, they don’t use QRTs to comment on public figures or organization problems, even when it would be appropriate, and instead basically insult the person, or at least personify systemic issues. Its CEO is a fascist so maybe Twitter clones like GNU Social and Mastodon were bad ideas after all.

@af Social Media has a way of conditioning people. It gives off an illusion of freedom of speech until it becomes an addiction to share data and location with just any stranger that watches your profile. Most people would probably argue that social media threatens privacy because they see cyber threats as superficial as those in a movie. Until they become a victim of it, they wouldn’t understand what it means to protect their data and privacy from prying eyes on the internet.

@aral Come to #Freenet, right now, break the ring!

We also have video, but no way to track what you watch. And 3 minute videos are just right.

@aral Any FOSS alternative to SnapChat? I been trying to find 1

@aral The hypocrisy is astounding. If anone doesn't think the federal government has tapped all internet traffic for the last 15 years, they have their heads in the sand.

@aral We tried giving the #Americans the ability to offer #FreeSpeech, after all, it is #Constitutional. They failed. Americans chose to use a #ChineseApp due to the flagrant abuses of #BigTech. Agree that #TikTok is troubling. @EU_Commission deserves a chance to #Correct US Voyeurs bad choices.

We want you guys to be the new #SocialMedia base. We trust you more as a whole. Your legislation proves that. #EU should invest in @Gargron Mastodon. Give them Server Space & Tools. Fix it.

@aral 😂🤣😂 The same thing happens all the time in my country, the United States 🇺🇸! I dislike the government of China 🇨🇳, but at least they are not hypocritical about harvesting corporate user data.

The USA “righteously” accuses other nations of committing the same sins America regularly practices.

Example: USA 🇺🇸 accuses Russia 🇷🇺 of illegally occupying Ukraine 🇺🇦, but the USA 🇺🇸 illegally occupies the Chagos Archipelago in Mauritius 🇲🇺.

@aral I appreciate you trying to flip the context, but none of the social networks are accessible by mere mortals in China. And perhaps that’s your point, but is putting up walls and using China as an example the answer?
Perhaps what you intended was to suggest that government should stay out of the social network data pools, but I think we’ve seen what happens when big tech companies have unfettered access to users. It becomes a free for all of exploitation and manipulation for profit.
So where’s the balance here? I think the EU is on the right path putting citizen rights first, generally speaking. The implantation may be a little ham fisted at this time but it will get better.
The answer, as I see it, is not found in extremism allowing or banning all access, but a balanced approach determined by *good* governance.
Now, what does good look like to you?

@aral knowing that the same wrong is done in the US does not right, or even negate the wrong being done by TikTok/China.

End it everywhere.
No data collection without clear, opt in language and workflows

No selling or exposure of data without additional clear language, expressed, opt in.

@fu @aral @fyrfli

H.R. 8152 is on the right track, covering affirmative consent to data collection and plain language disclosure of what the use of the data will be.
It's up to the people, especially the American public, to hold Congress accountable to get it passed. One can only hope … but our policymakers are too caught up in stuff that doesn’t interest or concern us.

@aral We have fantastic choices these days! I'm actually overwhelmed.

Should I let the Americans, the Chinese or the Russians spy on me?

Ohhh I dunno I'll just go for all three!!1

Although, TikTok is still worse as the app contains the ability to download and execute arbitrary code on the device.. The others may be spyware, but TikTok is a trojan...

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