If you’re a politician or political hopeful on TikTok, you won’t be able to use the platform to ask for money ahead of the US midterms.
TikTok has long banned(Opens in a new window) paid political ads and branded content, and it recently moved to crack down on influencers who violated that rule. But with less than seven weeks until folks in the US head to the polls to choose their next state and local representatives, TikTok is doing the same for political content at an account level.
Politicians and political parties will temporarily lose access(Opens in a new window) to advertising features—save for “limited circumstances” like spreading public health and safety information, which will require assistance from a TikTok representative. They’ll also be prohibited from tapping into other monetization features, including gifting, tipping, e-commerce, and the Creator Fund.
“These changes, along with our existing ban on political advertising, mean that accounts belonging to governments, politicians, and political parties will largely not be able to give or receive money through TikTok’s monetization features, or spend money promoting their content,” says Blake Chandlee, president of global business solutions at TikTok.
Over the coming weeks, the social network will also bar solicitations for campaign fundraising, be it a video from a politician asking for donations or a political party directing folks to a donation page on their website.
“TikTok is first and foremost an entertainment platform, and we’re proud to be a place that brings people together over creative and entertaining content,” Chandlee says. “We’re aiming to strike a balance between enabling people to discuss the issues that are relevant to their lives while also protecting the creative, entertaining platform that our community wants.”
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To help you identify legit political accounts, meanwhile, TikTok is trialing mandatory verification for profiles belonging to governments, politicians, and political parties now through the Nov. 8 midterms. The blue check mark, previously an optional feature, will appear next to a confirmed user’s account name in search results and on their profiles.
“Verification lets our community know an account is authentic and belongs to the user it represents,” says Chandlee. “Which is a way to build trust between high-profile creators and their community.”
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