TikTok’s Secret ‘Heating’ Button Can Make Anyone Go Viral


Publish Date:
January 20, 2023
Related Person(s):


“We think of social media as being very democratizing and giving everyone the same opportunity to reach an audience,” said Evelyn Douek, a professor at Stanford Law School and Senior Research Fellow at the Knight First Amendment Institute at Columbia University. But that’s not always true, she cautioned. “To some degree, the same old power structures are replicating in social media as well, where the platform can decide winners and losers to some degree, and commercial and other kinds of partnerships take advantage.”

Douek, the Stanford professor, said disclosing where and how TikTok uses heating “would be a first step” to getting users comfortable with the tool. “But sometimes, the reason why they don’t [use clearer labels] is because transparency allows for criticism.”

Read More