TikTokers say McDonald’s paid to get unblocked after viral blocking campaign

@just.chill.jill/TikTok wolterke/Adobe Stock (Licensed)

‘If you blocked McDonald’s, go check’: TikTokers say McDonald’s paid to get unblocked after viral blocking campaign

‘We got a lot more fighting to do.’

 

Beau Paul

Trending

Is McDonald’s paying TikTok to get back onto your FYP? That’s what many people on the short-form video platform are alleging. In the wake of a campaign to shut out celebs and corporations, some TikTokers claim that the fast-food giant is trying to buy its way back into the algorithm.

But is it true?

In the wake of Israel’s conflict with Gaza, numerous users of social media have responded with a decision “to block celebrities that haven’t expressed support for Palestine on social media,” as reported by the Daily Dot.

As per our previous reporting, “The movement is also being called “Blockout 2024,” “Block Party 2024,” and “Block 2024.”

However, a stitch posted by activist and TikToker Jill (@just.chill.jill), in conjunction with TikToker @thecreepycoroner, is alleging that corporate giant and fast-food chain McDonald’s is somehow circumventing the block.

Jill’s video was posted on TikTok on May 15, and it now has over 2.1 million views and counting.

The video begins with commentary by @thecreepycoroner. Jill’s claims that “McDonald’s [sic] paid to be unblocked.

In the original video, @thecreepycoroner claims, “McDonald’s unblocked everyone. If you blocked McDonald’s, go check.”

“TikTok is being paid by these companies, corporations, and celebrities,” he claims. “They can go in and press a button and unblock them. They don’t have to make you follow them: So you won’t notice. But they’ll unblock them,” he claims.

“We got a lot more fighting to do. We might need a new platform,” he adds.

The Daily Dot has reached out to TikTok via email for a statement concerning its unblocking policies.

In Jill’s video, she claims to support the theory based on her own experience. “Yep, they absolutely did,” she tells viewers. “I blocked so many different McDonald’s [accounts] and every single one of them is unblocked now,” she claims.

“I didn’t know you could just pay TikTok to get unblocked by people,” she alleges.

“I’ll just do it again. And again. And again,” she tells her viewers.

The Daily Dot reached out McDonald’s via email regarding the allegations it unblocked itself on the TikTok platform or any other social media platforms.

The Daily Dot also reached out to Jill via TikTok messenger for further comment.

Similar allegations have recently been made

Despite the allegations, there is no real proof at this time that a corporation or entity can “unblock” itself via payment to TikTok or its management. However, this is not the first time that similar allegations have been made that the platform is manipulating its algorithm.

“What’s particularly disconcerting is that this isn’t an isolated incident confined to interactions with McDonald’s; rather, it extends to other prominent entities such as celebrities and the brands they represent,” @thecreepycoroner told the Daily Dot.

Just five days ago, TikTok user Abigailee (@_abigailee_) alleged that she was somehow following artist JoJo Siwa, despite never having opted to do so.

“I never would have followed JoJo Siwa. In fact, I thought I would have blocked her doing the lockout,” she claims.

After pointing out an alleged screenshot indicating that she is indeed following Siwa’s account she states, “This is against my will. I did not do this. So you should also go and see if you’re following JoJo Siwa against your will and other celebrities you might have blocked because it’s a little suspicious.”

The Daily Dot has contacted Abigail via TikTok messenger for a statement.

@just.chill.jill #stitch with @The Creepy Coroner #blockout2024 #blockparty2024 ♬ original sound – The Creepy Coroner🍉

Why were people blocking McDonald’s in the first place?

McDonald’s has taken some steps to distance itself from the Israeli/Hamas conflict. According to the BBC, the fast-food giant currently seeks to “buy back all of its Israeli restaurants after global sales slumped due to a boycott of the brand over its perceived support for Israel in its war against Hamas in Gaza.”

The company has issued a statement, as reported by the BBC that, it “remains committed to the Israeli market and to ensuring a positive employee and customer experience in the market going forward.”

“The initial decision to block such entities stemmed from a collective effort to divest from companies complicit in, or supportive of, the ongoing humanitarian crisis affecting the Palestinian people,” @thecreepycoroner told the Daily Dot.

There is, as yet, no hard evidence to confirm or deny McDonald’s or any other entity paid TikTok to “unblock” itself or otherwise influence any other social media algorithms.

“These are merely speculative observations at this point,” @thecreepycoroner told the Daily Dot. “It’s crucial to underscore that my intention is not to cast unfounded aspersions on these large corporations.”

However, the topic is definitely being discussed on TikTok. as well as Reddit. One comment in Reddit’s r/TikTokCringe states, “Imagine spending the funds on unblocking your ads instead of lowering your prices and slightly impacting your bottom line to bring in customers.”

But another comment in the same thread states, “Did anyone actually confirm this, because they are definitely still blocked for me. And the only information about this is from randoms on Tik Tok, not even popular independent news people.”

In the comments section of Jill’s video, one viewer asked, “Why would you block McDonald’s?”

Yet, other viewers were quick to point to their ire at the hamburger chain.

“Megacorporations NEXT! boycott 1 store/day day. No violence, no jobs taken, don’t go to certain stores on specific days.No Walmart Wednesdays,Target Tuesdays, Send a message! We hold power,” stillunder10k (@stillunder10k) wrote.

Another viewer added, “If McDonald’s does this again we could just report them for harassment and then block them again.”

However, many viewers commented that they were not experiencing the unblocking that Jill and @thecreepycoroner claimed to have experienced.

“Are they doing this just to the Americans, because I live in Finland and I keep hearing of everything getting unblocked, but my blocks are staying,” Kerttulrika (@kerttulrika) stated.

Another viewer commented, “In UK, everything is still blocked.” And another added, “in Belgium its blocked.”

Another offered some advice, writing, “The best block : go to settings then go to content preferences and then press filter video keywords. Write McDonald’s and save. That way you won’t get anything from McDonald’s or other blocked parasites.”

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