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Fears for Irish jobs as TikTok says it will cut hundreds of roles worldwide


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There are fears for Irish jobs at video-sharing platform TikTok after the company confirmed it would cut hundreds of jobs worldwide.

The cuts, which were announced to staff earlier on Monday, will hit the company’s training and quality team. The company did not say how many jobs would be lost in Ireland, but sources believe that a significant number of the losses announced will affect Irish staff. It is understood that the trust and safety teams, which are responsible for moderation on the platform, will not be impacted by the round of job cuts.

Around 3,000 people are currently employed by TikTok in Ireland, and the company is continuing to hire for key roles. Industry sources said they expected that to continue.

“As we continue to deliver on our unwavering commitment to safeguard the TikTok community, we’re undertaking a redesign of our training and quality team that will enable us to further enhance our quality assurance processes,” a spokeswoman for TikTok said. “Our priority is supporting affected employees through this transition to minimise the impact of the changes. Ireland remains a hugely important base for us, and we’re continuing to hire for roles across our business here.”

The job losses are the latest to be announced by Big Tech companies, with Google last month saying it would cut jobs as part of a global restructuring of its ads business. However, the impact on Irish jobs was minimal. Closer to home, video games services company Keywords Studios is in consultation with staff over planned redundancies.

Separately, the company is facing a formal investigation by European Union regulators into its alleged failure to protect minors who use the video-sharing platform.

European Union internal market commissioner Thierry Breton announced on Monday that TikTok will face a formal investigation under the bloc’s flagship Digital Services Act – which empowers regulators to levy fines of as much as 6 per cent of annual sales, or ban repeat offenders from the union.

Breton said on X that the bloc’s investigation will home in on TikTok’s addictive design and screen time limits, its privacy settings, and the social media platform’s age verification procedures. Bloomberg previously reported that the formal investigation was in the offing.

A TikTok spokesperson said that the firm will “continue to work with experts and industry to keep young people on TikTok safe, and look forward to now having the opportunity to explain this work in detail” to the European Commission.

The DSA gives regulators unprecedented powers to take action against big tech companies for how they handle content on their platforms.

European Union regulators in December opened their first formal investigation under the DSA into Elon Musk’s X to establish possible breaches in the way the platform handles illegal content and disinformation.

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The bloc singled out 19 online platforms and search engines last year as large entities worthy of scrutiny and has been quizzing them for information.

That includes X, Meta Platforms, Alphabet and others with more than 45 million monthly active users in Europe. The union has since also added three porn sites. – Additional reporting: Bloomberg

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