BIPOC Voices, News & Events

Black TikTok users protest the app’s racist censorship


words by: Natasha Marsh
May 23, 2020

I hope this news outrages you as much as it outrages me. TikTok has been taking down videos that speak against racism solely produced by Black account holders. The popular video sharing app released a statement admitting that they “implemented a blunt and temporary policy” to stop bullying on the platform. 

To clapback, TikTok users changed profile pictures to the Black Power symbol and created the #ImBlackMovement to stand up against the app’s censorship of Black users. 

The movement aims to show the importance of content creators of color. Yesterday, participants of the movement were asked to like posts of Black users only, for the whole day. Non-Black users were encouraged to comment with “#BlackVoicesHeard” on videos. 

The results were astounding, #BlackVoicesHeard reached 6 million views in one day. 



Personally, I’m thrilled at the positive outcome of the movement, but disappointed that it had to occur in the first place. I don’t want to belittle the need for non-Black allies, but it is frustrating that lately, change or impact requires them. 

The funny thing is, a white person who expresses similar concerns of TikTok’s racist censorship is commended. We’ve seen it countless times, more recently with Ahmaud Arbery. Videos went viral when white individuals took to Instagram, Facebook and TikTok to shame society which would target and murder a Black man solely based on his race. Yes, the collective sharing helped get justice for Ahmaud – but why were Black and brown voices only heard once white privilege stepped in? 

I for one, am sick of it. Sick of the hashtags, sick of the disrespect, sick of people willingly not seeing the issue. 

When is it going to click that you are killing us. Both creatively and physically.