Unpopular Update: Social Media Ban ‘Likely’ at Disney World and Disneyland

in Disneyland Resort, Walt Disney World

Two Guests checking Disneyland App in front of Sleeping Beauty Castle at Disneyland

Credit: Disney Parks Blog

TikTok live streamers’ days are numbered at Walt Disney World Resort and Disneyland Resort as a new law could stop the controversial practice for good.

Tokyo Disney Resort enacted strict rules on live streaming and vlogging in 2022. Combined with auxiliary equipment bans, the filming policies effectively banned disruptive social media use at Tokyo Disneyland and Tokyo DisneySea. A majority of the Disney fan community has long pleaded for Disneyland Resort and Walt Disney World Resort to follow suit.

Beyond the apparent privacy concern about a live streamer broadcasting other guests’ faces and locations online without consent, many guests find the practice’s legality dubious. Disneyland Resort and Walt Disney World Resort permit personal filming and photography but explicitly prohibit creating content for commercial use. Disney Park live streamers regularly receive monetary tips from chat.

Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse in their new outfits on Castaway Cay as revealed on the Disney Parks TikTok account.
Credit: @disneyparks via TikTok

Weeks ago, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis signed a law prohibiting anyone 13 and under from using social media sites in Florida, including at Walt Disney World Resort. However, 14 and 15-year-olds may use apps like Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, X (formerly Twitter), and Snapchat with permission from their parents.

A more widespread social media ban could end much of the content creation at both United States Disney Parks–a dream come true for some fans. According to a Thursday report from NBC, a nationwide TikTok ban is “likely” to pass in the coming days.

The House of Representatives passed a TikTok ban bill earlier this year, but it stalled in the Senate. House Speaker Mike Johnson repackaged the ban into a foreign aid package for Taiwan, Israel, and Ukraine. The House is expected to pass the new bill on Saturday evening with a possible Senate vote as soon as next week.

Joe Biden gives a speech
Credit: @POTUS via Instagram

President Joe Biden vowed to sign the bill once it reaches his desk. In addition to sending financial aid overseas, the bill would ban TikTok in the United States unless it divests from China-based ByteDance within one year. A U.S.-based company would need majority ownership of the popular short-form video app for it to continue operating.

If passed, the “Protecting Americans From Foreign Adversary Controlled Applications Act” would allow the president and FBI to “designate certain social media applications under the control of foreign adversaries, like China, Russia, Iran and North Korea, as national security threats.”

In a statement, TikTok argued that the proposed ban is a violation of the First Amendment right to free speech: “It is unfortunate that the House of Representatives is using the cover of important foreign and humanitarian assistance to once again jam through a ban bill that would trample the free speech rights of 170 million Americans, devastate 7 million businesses, and shutter a platform that contributes $24 billion to the U.S. economy, annually.”

hall of presidents joe biden animatronic
Credit: The Walt Disney Company

The end of most live streaming at Walt Disney World Resort and Disneyland Resort is just one potential repercussion of the TikTok ban. It wouldn’t stop Disney Park content creators entirely, as platforms like YouTube, Twitch, and Instagram have live streaming capabilities.

Do you support a TikTok ban at Walt Disney World Resort and Disneyland Resort? Share your opinion with Inside the Magic in the comments.

View Comment (1)