TikTok ‘tried to filter out videos from ugly, poor or disabled users’

My god, what an awful company:

TikTok moderators were told to suppress videos from users who appeared too ugly, poor or disabled, as part of the company’s efforts to curate an aspirational air in the videos it promotes, according to new documents published by the Intercept.

The documents detail how moderators for the social video app were instructed to select content for the influential “For You” feed, an algorithmic timeline that is most users’ first port of call when they open the app. As a result, being selected for For You can drive huge numbers of views to a given video, but the selection criteria have always remained a secret, with little understanding as to the amount of automation involved.

TikTok’s moderators were instructed to exclude videos from the For You feed if they failed on any one of a number of categories, the documents show. Users with an “abnormal body shape (not limited to: dwarf, acromegaly),” who are “chubby … obese or too thin” or who have “ugly facial looks or facial deformities” should be removed, one document says, since “if the character’s appearance is not good, the video will be much less attractive, not worthing [sic] to be recommended to new users.”