[Air-L] TikTok Bans and Research

Fred Fuchs fred at firesabre.com
Fri Jan 13 11:43:44 PST 2023

1. A VPN might well bypass Texas app, firewall, and computer 
policy, but it's not clear what Texas regulations, laws, or 
directives this might break.

2. University IT departments may have approved workarounds 
for accessing TikTok for research. It's worth contacting them.

3. it seems likely that those ordering a TikTok ban didn't 
realize that some might be conducting research on the platform.

4. In our company when we must access TikTok and other less 
trusted online apps and services, we use virtual machines, 
such as those usable from Oracle VirtualBox. Related: There 
are ways to emulate mobile devices on PCs and Macs.

5. TikTok is a significant privacy and security risk. We 
never access it on company cell phones. There have been 
claims in the technical and security press that TikTok sifts 
through data on phones, and can activate phone cameras and 
microphones in ways not known to the user.

6. We keep client data and any project-related student data 
confined to separate networks and separate computers. A 
similar sort of system isolation might be helpful for 
academics conducting research of untrusted apps such as TikTok.

7. I am not a lawyer. Please consider checking with 
technical advisors and legal council before doing any of 
these things.


Fred Fuchs - Founder, CEO, & Producer
FireSabre Consulting LLC
Content Services for Virtual Worlds


On 1/13/2023 11:30 AM, Arditi, David M via Air-L wrote:
> Hi All,  > > I just realized that I can no longer access TikTok 
from work computers. This is in compliance with a policy 
about TikTok in Texas. Since the American federal government 
and other states are banning it as well, I'm wondering if 
anyone has figured out an effective workaround. This is a 
big barrier to conducting academic research on TikTok, 
social media, or just the cultural world. Any suggestions 
would be useful. > > Thank you, > David > > Dr. David Arditi 
 > Associate Professor of Sociology > Director of the Center 
for Theory > University of Texas at Arlington > > 
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