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TikTok ends its $2 billion fund for creators


TikTok is closing its $2 billion Creator Fund, a 2020 initiative designed to help pay eligible users creating content on the app, a spokesperson for the platform confirmed Monday.

The fund was intended to “help support ambitious creators who are seeking opportunities to earn a living through their innovative content” by providing them with money distributed through the fund over three years, according to a July 2020 press release from TikTok. The money was distributed based on creators’ share of the platform’s overall opinion.

But after the fund launched, many creators expressed concerns, saying it made monetization on TikTok difficult. Hank Green, an early YouTube star and considered an authority on Internet culture, was among those who publicly expressed concerns last year, saying the fund was outdated. He argued that rather than serving the best interests of its creators, TikTok’s monetization tool served to improve the platform’s bottom line.

Other creators were quick to echo Green’s complaint, sharing how little revenue they generated from the platform despite having a significant number of viewers. At the time, Green – who has 8 million followers on TikTok – said that for every 1,000 views he earned about 2.5 cents.

The fund will be discontinued on December 16 in the US, UK, France and Germany, according to The Verge and Fortune. A TikTok spokesperson confirmed to NBC News that the fund was closing but did not share its end date or any other details.

“The creativity program was developed based on the learnings and feedback we got from the previous Creators Fund,” the spokesperson said in an emailed statement. “As we continue to develop new ways to reward creators and enrich the TikTok experience, we value direct feedback and ideas from our community to help inform our decisions.”

The news comes just months after TikTok unveiled its creativity program, which sought to address some creators’ initial complaints about the fund.

In a blog post about the creativity program published in February, TikTok said creators can “earn up to 20 times the amount previously offered by the Creators Fund.” Videos eligible for the program must be longer than a minute and generate at least 1,000 views, and they must meet the platform’s community guidelines, among other criteria.

To apply for the Creativity Fund, which appears to still be in beta, creators must be based in the United States and over the age of 18, and they must have had more than 10,000 subscribers and at least 100,000 video views as of during the last 30 days. It was not immediately clear whether TikTok plans to include global creators in another monetization program.


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