WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – Testimony continued on Capitol Hill Thursday over TikTok and concerns over user data.
The video-sharing app has millions of users and is very popular among many students.
“I could just see that students were enamored with it,” said Christian Trotter, a recently retired Wichita Southeast High School teacher.
Meeting his student where they were, Trotter joined in on the app. During the pandemic, he started making videos.
“I was kinda just trying to make it more fun. During that time, I had two kids in my class, but mostly everyone was remote. So I had to come up with ways to make it more interesting than usual,” he said.
From teacher jokes to class lessons, some of Trotter’s videos even went viral.
“Students were more interested because I was putting it on TikTok, paying more attention,” he said. “Kinda just more entertaining because they didn’t know if it was going to wind up on TikTok or not.”
Aside from connecting with students, Trotter says TikTok has helped connect him to teachers across the country to share ideas. It has even helped some teachers with supplementary income or get donations for their classrooms.
Now congress is once again bringing up TikTok security concerns.
“It doesn’t make a whole lot of sense to me because every app out there releases your information to people who are willing to sell it,” Trotter said.
Tech expert Bill Ramsey says there is a difference, though.
“Those social media companies like Facebook are owned and here in the U.S., and the U.S. has some control over that,” explained Ramsey, CEO of Soteria Technology Solutions.
Versus TikTok, which is owned by China.
“Who is not necessarily our friend could misuse that information or gather that data, and it could be a national security incident,” Ramsey said.
Ramsey adding in that he hasn’t seen evidence of that happening.