The Student News Site of Lincoln Park Performing Arts Charter School


The Student News Site of Lincoln Park Performing Arts Charter School


Solen Feyissa
Photo credit: Solen Feyissa from @unsplash. (IG @aarif-foto)

Imagine: a world without TikTok.

Pres. Joe Biden takes a hammer and smashes the dreams of young people, aspiring influencers, and drop shippers everywhere. The world goes mad.

Desperate rebels send out a signal to the only man who can intervene. “President Trump, if you see this, please save us. This is America. This is our land.

“Help us, Obi-Wan Trump. You’re our only hope.”

Could this nightmare scenario actually happen? Well, it’s one step closer to reality.

This week, President Biden signed a bill that would force the company ByteDance to sell social media platform TikTok to another company, or it will be banned entirely. It’s been announced that the main reason for this move is to stop the security breaches of U.S. citizens’ personal information to the Chinese government.

Pres. Joe Biden, who this week signed a bill forcing the sale of TikTok

The bill states that ByteDance will have an extended timeline of 270 days to sell its infamous platform, an unusually short amount of time for a sale of this magnitude. The bill will put the deadline right after the long-anticipated 2024 election.

So naturally, The SIREN talked to numerous Lincoln Park students to get their thoughts on this pending legislation.

Among students surveyed, the average amount of time spent on TikTok is almost four hours daily.

Several students, however, admitted to using the app far more than that amount.

Junior health science major of Midland Kenneth McCune said, “I use it about 12 or 13 hours. I fall asleep to it.”

Kenneth McCune (photo by Taylor Hill)

Perhaps surprisingly, though, a number of students interviewed support a ban on Tik Tok.

“I don’t think TikTok is good for our generation,” said sophomore media major Delana Duncan of Aliquippa. “It’s addictive.”

Freshman media major Kaylee Plum of Ambridge, who doesn’t use TikTok, said, “I think banning TikTok is good because, based on how many people I know use it, it really distracts them from doing their work, and it makes it harder for them to focus on things because they’re always scrolling and don’t get much stuff done.”

Freshman writing and publishing major Evie Lindgren of Ambridge agreed. “I think it would be good because I think TikTok has influenced people in a negative way. I think social media in general would be a good thing to ban.”

Other students bemoaned Biden’s ban.

“I wish he wouldn’t ‘cause I use it all the time,” said seventh-grade music major Khobi Hall of Central Valley. “It’s my main thing to go on it.”

Khobi Hall (photo by Ollie Warren)

Sophomore health science major Yarlee Bailey of Aliquippa said, “It shouldn’t be banned because it could help with a lot of things.”

Kenneth McCune added, “It’s pretty dumb. I get a lot of my information from TikTok. Even though it’s not the best source of information, it still allows problems to connect and communicate through it.”

Senior media major Joey Malia of Center Township thinks the ban is “completely unnecessary. It’s actually just because it’s Chinese. If we look at the company ByteDance, only 60 percent is owned by Chinese shareholders, like 40 percent is America, so it really seems they’re only trying to control the flow of information.”

TikTok’s ownership is a complex situation that has been hotly debated recently. Poynter Institute recently examined claims about the company’s foreign stakeholders. In the story, the company Politifact asserted that 60 percent of ByteDance Ltd. is owned by “global investors,” with 20 percent each owned by “co-founders” and “employees.”

However, Poynter also acknowledged that “PolitiFact has a partnership with TikTok to counter inauthentic, misleading or false content.”

Former President Donald Trump attempted to ban TikTok, resulting in angered youth and elevated publicity. He now defends TikTok. Some believe that that is due to Jeffrey Yass, who claims a 15 percent stake of TikTok, and who publicly supports Trump.

Even though Trump is now apparently a TikTok supporter, some students said it didn’t change their view of the former president.

“I still think Trump is bad for what he’s done,” says eighth grade media major Braxton Molinero of Peters Township. “It’s never going to make up for the Capitol and stuff.”

Seventh grade writing and publishing major Wyatt Barkley of Portersville agreed: “You can’t overlook his past with the presidential stuff.”

However, freshman music major Charles Richardson of Quaker Valley called Trump’s shift “a smart play.”

Charles Richardson (photo by Ollie Warren)

“I’ve never really had an opinion, but I think he took a chance to get votes,” Richardson said. “He said in his tweet that he’s supporting not banning, which will probably make 18 years olds vote for him.”

But Trump has also made some fans among Lincoln Park students.

Clark Smith

“F*** Biden, b**** I’m trynna watch TikTok you ruinin’ my f****** year,” said junior health science major Clark Smith of Aliquippa. “Yeah, I f*** with Trump now, not gon’ lie.”

SIREN reporters Camilla Adams, Tyson Florence, Lily Fortier, Taylor Hill, Anya Martin, Demarion Martin, Felicity Portoulas, and Ollie Warren contributed to this story.

What do you think about Biden’s proposed TikTok ban? Let us know in the comments!

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About the Contributors
Taylor Hill
Taylor Hill is senior at Lincoln Park and is a writing and publishing major. She’s the editor in chief for The SIREN newspaper and is also writing the horror column for The SIREN this year.
Ollie Warren
Ollie Warren is a senior writing and publishing major. They write the Flip Feature column, review Lincoln Park shows, and work as the managing editor of The SIREN. They love to watch movies, swim, and learn about history and science. After high school, they plan to go to college and get a degree in History Ed.

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