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President’s Order: Social Media Shutdown Looms Over Walt Disney World

Joe Biden with a phone in front of Cinderella Castle at Magic Kingdom
Edited Images from Disney / @JoeBiden X

United States President Joe Biden has signed a national security bill that will allow a social media ban to take effect beginning next month if specific measures are not met. This means influencers and guests who frequent the Walt Disney World parks will be affected. Here’s what you need to know.

Ron DeSantis pointing with a smile while inside the Magic Kingdom Disney World park with a smartphone in the background.

Credit: Inside The Magic

National Security Bill Includes TikTok Ban That Will Affect Walt Disney World Influencers and Guests

President Joe Biden has signed a sweeping national security bill into law, compelling ByteDance to divest from TikTok or risk facing a ban on app stores within nine months.

After the signing, Biden underscored the bill’s significant allocation of $95 billion to support Ukraine, Israel, and Taiwan.

However, the President did not specifically address the provision about TikTok, a popular social media platform that has sparked concerns about potential access to user data by the Chinese government.

Statue of walt disney holding hands with mickey mouse in front of cinderella castle at disney world, with a clear blue sky background.

Credit: Disney

In response to the legislation, TikTok CEO Shou Chew expressed disappointment in a video shared on X/Twitter, stating, “Rest assured, we are not going anywhere.” Chew also indicated that TikTok intends to challenge the law in court, asserting confidence in prevailing with support from facts and constitutional principles.

ByteDance now has a nine-month window to sell TikTok or face app store bans, although the President retains the authority to extend this deadline by an additional three months.

Despite the impending restrictions, NBC News reported that President Biden’s campaign intends to continue utilizing TikTok, with the President himself appearing in social media content linked to Super Bowl Sunday.

Left image shows a plaque with "department of defense" on a building wall. Right image features Cinderella's Castle at Disney World during a sunset.

Image Credit: Inside The Magic

By a vote of 79-18, the Senate’s passing of the legislation solidifies the TikTok divestment mandate within a broader $95 billion national security package earmarked for aiding Ukraine, Israel, and Taiwan. President Biden is expected to sign the bill promptly.

In a statement, Biden emphasized the urgent need to assist conflict-affected regions and partners worldwide, pledging to swiftly deploy resources to Ukraine, Israel, and other areas grappling with instability.

While TikTok has signaled its intention to challenge the legislation in court, contending that a potential ban infringes on free speech rights, the platform continues to lobby to defend its creators’ ability to express themselves freely.

A serene morning at a magical theme park, featuring a statue of Walt Disney and Mickey Mouse, with a majestic castle standing tall in the backdrop amidst a clear blue sky.

Credit: Inside The Magic

What This Means for WDW Influencers and Guests

Unsurprisingly, Disney World has thousands of influencers and guests who use the TikTok app daily when visiting the WDW theme parks in Orlando or around the globe. Whether you frequent Disneyland, Disney World, or any other Disney parks around the globe, TikTok plays a crucial role in generating content that brings guests into the parks or allows influencers to earn a living by showcasing themselves around Hollywood Studios or Magic Kingdom.

This ban means thousands of influencers will have to resort to other platforms, like Instagram or YouTube, which already have high competition regarding content creation. The potential prohibition of TikTok, a widely-used social media platform, poses notable repercussions for both influencers and guests of Walt Disney World.

Influencers whose digital presence relies heavily on TikTok to share content about their experiences within the theme park may need help reaching their audience should the app be removed from app stores. Such a scenario could impede their ability to engage with followers, endorse Disney-related content, and cultivate revenue streams through collaborations and sponsorships.

A bustling night-time scene at a theme park with visitors strolling down the main street, lit by the glow of ambient lighting, with a fairy tale castle illuminated in the background, creating a magical atmosphere.

Credit: Inside the Magic

TikTok Responds to President Joe Biden and Looming Ban

@tiktok

Response to TikTok Ban Bill

♬ original sound – TikTok – TikTok

For guests, the absence of TikTok could curtail their access to user-generated content, reviews, and recommendations about Walt Disney World. TikTok has evolved into a pivotal platform where guests exchange experiences, dispense advice, and showcase highlights from their visits. In the absence of TikTok, guests may need to seek out alternative platforms or resources for guidance and inspiration while planning their excursions to the theme park.

Moreover, suppose TikTok faces a ban from app stores. In that case, guests reliant on the app for entertainment or communication during their Walt Disney World visits may be compelled to explore alternative avenues for accessing similar content or connecting with fellow visitors. Such a shift could potentially impact the overall guest experience and communal atmosphere within the park.

In essence, the prospective prohibition of TikTok threatens to disrupt the social media ecosystem surrounding Walt Disney World, impacting influencers and guests alike who depend on the platform for diverse purposes linked to their encounters at the theme park.

This post originally appeared on Inside the Magic

About Emmanuel Detres

Since first stepping inside the Magic Kingdom at nine years old, I knew I was destined to be a theme Park enthusiast. Although I consider myself a theme Park junkie, I still have much to learn and discover about Disney. Universal Orlando Resort has my heart; being an Annual Passholder means visiting my favorite places on Earth when possible! When I’m not writing about Disney, Universal, or entertainment news, you’ll find me cruising on my motorcycle, hiking throughout my local metro parks, or spending quality time with my girlfriend, family, or friends.

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