Controversial video app TikTok has launched a new Creators Fund that is kicking off with $200 million for video creators in the United States. The fund is intended to help support users on the platform, giving them a way to earn money from their videos. The company will accept applications from interested and eligible users starting in August, though not everyone will qualify.
The TikTok Creator Fund was announced on Wednesday by the company’s US General Manager Vanessa Pappas, who explains that this new fund is different than the Creative Learning Fund, which offers $50 million. The new fund is open to US creators who are at least 18 years old and who meet certain requirements, including having a certain minimum number of followers.
As well, the company says that eligible creators are ones who regularly post original content that meets the TikTok Community Guidelines. Those interested in getting some of this money will need to apply in August when the company starts accepting applications. The company plans to distribute these funds over the next year; it’s unclear how much creators could potentially receive.
A number of TikTok creators have turned the platform into a source of income by getting sponsorships and partnerships, as well as deals with agencies in some cases. TikTok highlights some of these creators to underscore the reason for its Creator Fund, explaining that it wants this money to ‘encourage those who dream of using their voices and creativity to spark inspirational careers.’
The announcement comes amid ongoing controversy over the social media app, which is owned by Chinese company ByteDance and has raised national security concerns in the US and abroad. Critics claim that TikTok may be a spying threat; it has been banned from certain company- and government-owned devices in the US and was recently banned in India. Others have said the potential dangers of TikTok — which the company has denounced — are just hypothetical at this point.