TikTok has been accused of mishandling allegations of sexual misconduct and harassment in opposition to a senior supervisor in London, highlighting longstanding considerations in regards to the working tradition on the fast-growing social media platform.
Steve Ware, former head of TikTok’s UK e-commerce studio operations, made inappropriate sexual feedback and advances to younger feminine workers members and shoppers, together with influencers who create content material on the app, in keeping with 4 girls who labored with him at TikTok.
Ware has instructed the Monetary Occasions that every one allegations in opposition to him are “false.”
The problems associated to Ware observe earlier claims about failures to deal with formal HR complaints in opposition to senior workers and considerations in regards to the working tradition on the short-form video app owned by China’s ByteDance.
The FT reported final 12 months that Joshua Ma, who had been main TikTok’s European e-commerce workforce, instructed workers at a dinner that “as a capitalist,” he “didn’t imagine” in maternity go away. Ma stepped down from his position following the revelation however stays on the firm.
One lady, whom we name Sarah to guard her id, outlined a sequence of distressing encounters together with her boss, Ware, in late 2021 and early 2022. The FT has reviewed messages between Sarah and Ware, her communications with TikTok, in addition to with mates that corroborate points of her story.
Sarah stated the habits included being repeatedly propositioned by Ware within the workplace, at work occasions, over messages despatched exterior work hours, and two situations of inappropriate touching. Sarah stated she felt unsafe and trapped in rooms alone with him, the place he as soon as tried to kiss her and on one other event threatened to “slap her arse.”
In early 2022, Sarah raised the difficulty with Ware’s supervisor, Patrick Nommensen, who positioned her on quick paid suspension as the corporate investigated the grievance.
Nommensen requested Sarah to solely go surfing to inner programs to contact him or the corporate’s ethics officer in regards to the investigation, in keeping with an inner message reviewed by the FT. Sarah stated she submitted about 30 screenshots of communications and an inventory of 5 individuals who might help her account to the investigation.