NYC Bans TikTok on Government Devices

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New York City banned TikTok on government devices on Aug. 16, 2023. The ban requires that all employees remove the app within 30 days and access will be denied to both the TikTok app and the website on city devices and networks.

The TikTok accounts of Mayor Eric Adams and the Departments of Sanitation and Parks & Recreation have been updated with the message: “This account was operated by NYC until August 2023. It’s no longer monitored.”

Tiktok “posed a security threat to the city’s technical networks,” according to Jonah Allon, a spokesperson for the mayor.

The ban comes amid the city’s efforts to curb “subway surfing,” a dangerous trend made popular again recently on social media apps like TikTok and which has resulted in four teen deaths in 2023 and numerous injuries plus over 70 arrests. Mayor Adams called on social media platforms to delete any subway surfing content.

The state government of New York has not banned TikTok on government devices, though many states have.

1. Should TikTok be banned from government devices? Why or why not?

2. Should other social media platforms be banned from government devices? Why or why not?

3. Should social media platforms be held accountable for dangerous or illegal content? Explain your answer.

Dustin Jones, “NYC Officials Are Trying to Stop the Deadly Social Media Trend of ‘Subway Surfing,’”, Aug. 17, 2023

Ramsey Khalifeh and Christian Santana, “1 Dead, 1 Injured in Brooklyn Subway Surfing Incident,”, June 23, 2023

Sapna Maheshwari, “New York City Bans TikTok on Government-Owned Devices,”, Aug. 16, 2023