Itxu Díaz: China's Using TikTok to Dupe Americans, And Biden Has Already Fallen for It


When mankind was still running around the tundra in loincloths, dances were choral, involving the participation of the entire tribe. Dance often occurred as a petition to the gods for a good harvest, for enemies to die or for the rains to come.

With urbanization, people began to dance in small groups, in the squares, around a band. The motive was to celebrate a special date, a saint, perhaps, or a good tax cut.

The discos and pubs of the 20th century reduced the method of dance to small groups that moved to the beat simultaneously, although they often did not interact with each other. The main reason for the dance then was to find a partner and get drunk — or get drunk in order to forget that you couldn’t find a partner.

And finally, TikTok invented solo dancing, where thousands of users spend hours frolicking about for a few seconds in front of their phones, for who knows why, looking like they just walked off a scene from “Baywatch.” Perhaps they are unaware of the fact that they are giving away their biometric data to a company whose headquarters are suspiciously close to those of the Chinese Communist Party.

Dancing alone is not bad. I did it once — in the company of half a bottle of whiskey. But the last thing that would occur to me, in that circumstance, is to record and share it.

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TikTok has come along to tell you that it’s a good idea to lock yourself in your room and sensually move your hips in front of a device, for the solace and enjoyment of the CCP spies, the laughter of your enemies and the melancholic drunkenness of your ex-boyfriends. It doesn’t seem like your typical app that will be remembered because it helped bring Western civilization out of its decline.

Now, Biden wants to repeal the ban that Donald Trump pushed for against this social networking service. I’m sure he thinks TikTok is a chocolate cookie or some sort of snack. Trump, convinced that the Chinese communists could be using the service to spy on American citizens, banned it ten months ago because he considered it a threat to national security.

Experience tells us that, when it comes to China, the worst, the unbelievable, the most dangerous and what’s most denied is always true.

Otherwise, there would be no need for being nice to the Chinese at this time. In fact, I can’t think of a worse time to fraternize with the Chinese regime and its interests. But Biden manages American politics with the same hesitant judgment with which he guides his steps as he walks. What’s concerning isn’t that it gives the impression that he doesn’t get what’s going on. What’s concerning is that he actually doesn’t get it.

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TikTok has 800 million users worldwide, according to Data Reportal. In other words, there are 800 million people who share their personal data with the Beijing-based company — from their geographic location to their contacts — by way of the camera and the microphone, of course.

In its American version, the application says it stores data in the United States and Singapore and that it does not have data centers in China. In its European version, TikTok only says that the data is transferred to a destination outside the European Economic Area.

Intriguing. But there is more.

In its privacy policy, TikTok confesses that it collects identifiers and biometric information such as facial and voice impressions in the videos, although it intends to do so under American regulations. So you can paint as nice a picture as you like, but day and night a large Chinese company is collecting highly sensitive data from a hundred million American users and a hundred million other European users.

Still, if Biden doesn’t want to reconsider his idea because of the national security risk involved, let him at least do so because of the risk it poses to good taste or even productivity.

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When people start dancing in front of their cellphones or record irrelevant videos, they aren’t working. Meanwhile, the Chinese never stop working.

It’s a devious way to win a modern conflict: keep your enemy distracted with something so stupid that he doesn’t suspect an act of war. And TikTok is such a genuinely stupid tool that it has to be a secret weapon.

This article first appeared on The Western Journal en Español.

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Itxu Díaz is a Spanish journalist, political satirist and author. He has written nine books on topics as diverse as politics, music or smart appliances. He is a contributor to The Daily Beast, The Daily Caller, National Review, The American Conservative, The American Spectator and Diario Las Américas in the United States, and columnist for several Spanish magazines and newspapers. He was also an advisor to the Ministry for Education, Culture and Sports in Spain. Follow him on Twitter at @itxudiaz or visit his website