The Brief: #CopsOfTikTok is a community of law enforcement officials on TikTok. Their videos, while mostly playful in nature, aren't always well-received by viewers.
TikTok is typically known as an app for teens entertaining themselves with viral dance trends, amusing lip-sync videos, and sketch comedy bits. While the app is filled with a ton of teenage accounts, there are subcultures of adults, including the #Over30 crowd, the elderly, and parents. You can also catch professionals like nurses, news personalities, and even law enforcement officials using the app to connect with their communities — all the while having a little fun. Police officers can be found dancing and lip-syncing under the hashtag #CopsOfTikTok. The hashtag currently has over 1.5 billion views.
Though, the playful demeanor exhibited by some law enforcement on TikTok differs greatly from the videos containing police brutality on the news, like in the case of Officer Anthony Johnson. His popular TikTok account (@ohnoitsdapopo) is filled with videos of him dancing with neighborhood kids, but June 2019, he was caught on camera punching an unarmed Black man in the face.
No matter how bad things get… never let it stop you from having fun!
Not all police officer’s TikToks are welcome. Simi Valley Police Department hopped on TikTok’s “Choose Your Character” trend. An officer exhibited various law enforcement uniforms — complete with weapons. The video did not sit well with Twitter users. Many condemned the video for being tone deaf.