FGCU bans TikTok and other social media apps

Author: AMY GALO Writer: Paul Dolan
Published: Updated:

The hay days of a popular social media app have ended on FGCU’s campus.

TikTok, along with four other websites and apps, will no longer be accessible to FGCU students or staff on university devices or networks.

Students are predictably unhappy and don’t like the change. But they also know they can work around the university’s restrictions.

FGCU and other public universities won’t allow TikTok to be accessed on university devices or it’s networks.

“When I wake up, when I go to bed, when I’m just like, eating alone. I’ll just be scrolling through the app,” FGCU freshman Cassidy said.

While for others, TikTok is a source of income.

“I’ve known friends who have like modeling agencies on TikTok, and they make their own products,” FGCU freshman William Figueroa said.

But, FGCU and seven other Florida public universities have restricted access on campus to the popular app and a few others.

“I just find it kind of odd,” FGCU student Alex Kilker said.

The rationale for banning the apps is because of safety concerns for students and staff.

“I don’t really know what they’re like protecting us against,” Cassidy said.

“I think part of it is just like there have been other security breaches in a number of different industries in recent years,” Dr. Chrissann Ruehle said.

Dr. Ruehle, an artificial intelligence ethics expert, told WINK News her opinion saying the apps are pretty safe. But, going on to explain, that the Florida Board of Governors claims TikTok poses a threat to national and state cybersecurity because a Chinese technology company owns the app.

“They actually use a cloud A system that is provided by Oracle, which is a US-based company, and the people that are charged with managing the data and protecting it are all US citizens. So to tiktoks benefit or advantage, I think they actually have some really good security protocols in place,” Dr. Ruehle said.

She thinks TikTok’s being unfairly targeted. As for FGCU students, they can still use the app so long as it isn’t on a personal device using personal data.

“There’s ways around it. There’s loopholes, but just the fact that they wanted to do that really, like irks me and my friends too,” FGCU freshman William Figueroa said.

The TikTok ban is not just occurring in Florida. The Biden Administration has demanded the Chinese owners sell their stake in the social media platform or risk facing a United States ban of the app.

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