TikTok recently updated its community guidelines after the rising popularity and threat of social networking schemes and has banned Multilevel marketing (MLM), Ponzi scheme, and pyramiding tactics on its platform. These schemes are harmful and misleading to people and TikTok would not tolerate these kinds of content on popular social media.

The Chinese short-video sharing application from ByteDance, TikTok, have shown their iron rule and enforced a new guideline for users to be protected on the social media platform. MLM, Ponzi schemes, and pyramiding schemes are slowly growing in the platform over the course of 2020, with TikTok now making a move against it. 

Any content relating to any of the three schemes would immediately be banned in the social media platform for the protection of users and its audience whose age bracket are mostly in the pre-teens to the current teenage generation. According to TikTok, social media's move is centered on supporting the "community well-being" of everyone on the platform. 

These schemes mostly appeal to emotion and manipulating people into thinking that their lives would be better if their services are purchased or used. However, this is rarely the case as these tactics are focused on gathering revenue or sales from people who are swooned, rather than delivering on their promise to make people wealthier or richer. 

On the other hand, TikTok's new community guidelines would focus more on its user's well-being by filtering out or censoring videos that may have mature or sensitive content. The overall rework of TikTok is focused on the community, empowering the platform to be safe and friendly to all forms of audience, of any age. 

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TikTok Bans MLM: What is Multilevel Marketing and Why It Gets Special Exception?

According to The Balance SMB, Multilevel Marketing (MLM) is a way to attract potential distributors or retailers of a product from its main companies to sell their products for them, without necessarily using advertisements. This form of business strategy is more focused on making people sell the product to the public, rather than letting the product sell itself.

MLM is a way to directly sell products and it mainly requires the use of social media platforms to promote and engage people in becoming entrepreneurs and "resellers." While MLM is entirely different from a pyramiding or the popular Ponzi scheme, as it allows people to sell the products on their own, with their tactics, area, and pace. 

This method is highly popular in the top three social media platforms, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, and most recently, TikTok. However, according to The Atlantic, the Chinese social media is the "First Major Anti-MLM Platform" in the industry.

While MLM does not directly involve themselves in scamming people or deceiving them into paying people without anything in return, the direct sale method is heavily-reliant on social media to sell itself. TikTok's decision shows that it wants to maintain its branding and identity as a recreational platform that centers on hobbies, games, lifestyle, etc. 

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Written by Isaiah Alonzo

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