LOS ANGELES — According to research by a leading cybersecurity firm, a serious vulnerability has allowed some users of the social media network TikTok to view their own deaths at indeterminate points in the future. Security experts have warned users to limit their time on the app, although ByteDance, TikTok’s Chinese parent company, has assured users that these ominous videos have nether compromised their account nor sealed their eternal fates.
“It looked like all the other vids of me dancing in my bedroom,” Lizzie Davis, 17, a high school student in Encino, says of one such digital premonition, “but then I saw my bookcase fall and just crush me,” leaving her body pinned underneath until it went limp as Nikki Minaj echoed in the background. When she complained to the company, Ms. Davis was told that she is in no way doomed to suffer such a horrific demise and that the responsible code errors have been patched.
Nevertheless, users are still wary about using the app after some deaths have come to fruition. “I thought what Ronnie showed me was a joke,” says Jim Wyman, whose late husband was decapitated in a freak water-skiing accident weeks ago, “but when we were in Lake Tahoe — Bam! Ski to the neck; just like in the video.” Mr. Wyman believes that the death was more than an an errant ski gone wild and is pursuing legal action against TikTok as well as its Beijing-based owners.
In a press release on Monday, TikTok assured investors that the bug affected a “limited number” of users and that the company was “definitely not cursed by an unknown, arcane malice beyond human comprehension.”
“In fact, most accounts flagged by an internal review showed no deaths at all, only mindless blackness set to Lil Yachty on an inescapable loop.”