- In August, U.S. President Trump signed an order that is pressuring TikTok’s parent company, ByteDance, to sell the platform to a new owner.
- TikTok users responded by flooding the platform with memes about the ban and asking their followers to join them on other social media platforms.
- With the sale deadline approaching, some of Australia’s top TikTok users are worried about what the sale could mean for them, while others aren’t even aware it’s happening.
- Visit Business Insider Australia’s homepage for more stories.
Since its launch in 2017, TikTok’s incredible rise to becoming one of the world’s most popular social media platforms seemed unstoppable — until now.
In early August, U.S. President Donald Trump signed an executive order essentially banning TikTok in 45 days giving the short video service’s Chinese parent company, ByteDance, until then to sell the app.
Immediately after the announcement, some of the platform’s biggest stars responded to fears that TikTok would be banned or drastically changed by promoting accounts on other social media platforms and by making memes.
And while the initial deadline was extended to 90 days and potential buyers are lining up, uncertainty about what the sale could mean for the platform’s international users lingers.
But as the deadline looms closer, how are top Australian TikTok users reacting to a potential sale?
Some say they’re concerned about what could happen, while others had no idea about the sale at all.
Kyle Collins is a Victorian-based TikTok user who shares comedy videos and other trending video formats with his 913,000 followers.
He doesn’t expect significant alterations to the platform from the sale.
“However, if massive changes were made, for example, if TikTok could no longer be used in Australia, I would be worried,” he said.
Still, he’s made efforts to transfer some of his followers from TikTok to his other social media accounts on platforms like YouTube and Instagram. But Collins said he’s had limited success so far.
“I’ve tried to advertise my other social media platforms, yet I haven’t be able to transfer many of my followers,” he said.
Ben Hutchinson has built a big following on TikTok by sharing candid and funny TikToks of him dancing, crossdressing and talking about living in Brisbane.
At first, he wasn’t too concerned about TikTok’s sale either. Then people on the platform started making him worried.
“People were commenting saying, ‘I’m gonna miss you’. And that’s when I started pushing other social media, saying I’ll post my TikToks there if anything happens,” Hutchinson said.
Huchinson said he’s not too reliant on TikTok — he’s got active Instagram and YouTube accounts with large followings already. In the case of a ban, Hutchinson would consider using TikTok competitors like Instagram Reels and Triller.
Generally, Hutchinson is more platform-agnostic than some other creators.
“So long as you’re posting good content, people will follow. But I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t scrambling to get people to follow my other social media platforms as well,” he said.
Tanieka Kidd is an 18-year-old who joined TikTok last year on a whim. In just a short amount of time, she’s racked up more than 130,000 likes on her videos, which document her day-to-day life.
But she hadn’t even heard that the platform was even facing a sale.
“I had no idea,” she told Business Insider Australia. “I joined TikTok last year and accidentally blew up.
“Still learning how to use the app, honestly,” she said.
Business Insider Emails & Alerts
Site highlights each day to your inbox.