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Politics

Boris Johnson has joined TikTok – and it is not going very well

“You won’t necessarily catch me dancing on this site” says the prime minister on his new social account.

Boris Johnson took the plunge and joined TikTok this week – and it’s gone about as well as you might expect.

The prime minister has landed on the digital land of seven-second videos, dancing trends and transformations to demonstrate “all sorts of stuff about what [they’re] doing to deliver on [their] priorities” – and he didn’t fail to mention “uniting and levelling up our country.”  

In his debut video, he said: “You’ll get all sorts of messages and content that you might not get if you’re looking at Instagram or Snapchat or Facebook, Twitter.” 

But it didn’t take long for the backlash to begin. The comment section has been flooded with nearly 40,000 posts – a large number of which are people telling Johnson to resign.

Others include: “Boris please could you help me with my gas and electricity bill”, “Cheers Boris, Nan’s doing cartwheels to keep warm,” “My parents are away on holiday, they said no house parties – any tips on how to keep it on the down low?”.

TikTok users mocked Boris Johnson in the comment section.

According to cybercrew, 24 per cent of UK users on TikTok are between 15 and 25, in contrast to the Conservative voter demographic which was 58% were over 70 in the 2019 general election.  

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Other MP’s are already having success on TikTok such as Labour’s Zarah Sultana, who currently has over 312, 000 followers and 4.6 million likes.  

After Johnson’s opening video, users have taken advantage of the ‘stitch’ and ‘duet’ tools on the app that allow viewers to respond to Johnson in their own video. Content titles include: “This feels straight out of Black Mirror” and: “Why is social media a priority to our government?”  

Others have simply mimed profane gestures, and one split-screened Johnson’s video to make it look as if his right-arm was dancing with a bottle of beer.  

The most recent upload from the account is a 20-second split-screened video of Johnson and chancellor, Rishi Sunak laughing in an old interview, with the song Ain’t Gonna Stop by Carol Kay playing. The caption reads: “Your priorities are our priorities.” 

Many people predict that the Downing Street TikTok account will disable the comment section, to prevent further spamming of anti-Johnson discourse. Tory MP Dehenna Davison – recently branded the “TikTok MP” despite only having posted seven videos – has also been known to disable comments. 

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