Angry users of the popular TikTok video social network are hitting back at the Trump administration over a threatened ban of the digital operation by whacking Donald Trump’s own campaign app with savage reviews.
President Donald Trump said Tuesday that he was considering prohibiting TikTok, which is owned by China’s Bytedance Ltd., to punish China for its role in the spread of COVID-19, which the president has referred to as the “Wuhan flu” and even the racist “kung flu.” “Look, what happened with China with this virus, what they’ve done to this country and to the entire world is disgraceful,” he told Greta Van Susteren in an interview Tuesday.
Trump’s threat followed by just weeks TikTok users’ mobilization against his poorly attended campaign rally in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Users boasted they were in part responsible for a largely empty arena because they flooded Trump’s campaign site with fake requests for tickets to the event.
The retaliation against Trump got a boost Wednesday when popular TikTok user DeJuan Booker (@unusualbeing) called his 750,000 followers to action, Bloomberg was the first to report. He explained how to ding the Trump campaign app with a single-star rating.
“Gen Z don’t go down without a fight,” he told his followers. “Let’s go to war.“
The app had a feeble 1.2 rating average from 227,000 reviews on the Apple store as of Thursday night. “Horrible president, horrible app,” noted one review among a sea of one-star ratings.
Another read: “OMG PLZ DON’T DOWNLOAD.” Another bashed the app, adding: “I promise this isn’t another one of those ‘tik tok’ reviews.”
The TikTokkers hope the bad reviews will persuade Apple to remove the campaign app, but unpopularity isn’t enough to delete an app, according to Bloomberg. Still, the scathing reviews make for interesting reading.
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Monday that the Trump administration was considering a ban on Chinese social media apps, especially TikTok, because of concerns about privacy and security. He told Americans not to download the TikTok app unless they want their private information to fall into “the hands of the Chinese Communist Party.” Trump contradicted him the following day with his comment about punishing China over COVID-19.
The zoomer generation was suspicious about the threatened action.
“I don’t believe Trump is trying to take TikTok away because of national security, but more to retaliate against activism on the app and all the videos about him that drag him through the mud,” Darius Jackson, an 18-year-old TikTok user in Illinois, told Bloomberg. He also asked his followers to give the app a one-star rating.
Meanwhile, a popular comedian who lip-syncs Trump comments will be able to post her sketches on her go-to app as long as it lasts. Sarah Cooper’s latest jab against the president is called “How to Mask.”