According to some users, a group of men have declared April 24 “National Rape Day” and have made videos on the popular video-sharing app urging others to carry out assaults on that day.
Numerous TikTok users have made videos in a bid to warn their followers of the potential threat. Videos with the “April24” hashtag had more than 25 million combined views as of Monday.
But a spokesperson for TikTok told Newsweek that no videos promoting the carrying out of rape or sexual assaults on April 24 have been found on the platform.
“Keeping our community safe is our priority, and we do not tolerate content that promotes or glorifies non-consensual sexual acts including rape and sexual assault,” the spokesperson said.
“While we have not found evidence on our platform of any videos related to this subject, our safety team is remaining vigilant and we will remove content that violates our policies.”
While it’s not clear where the trend originated, TikTok videos warning people about it have racked up hundreds of thousands of likes in recent days.
“I’m sure most of you have seen it, it’s been going around for a few days now,” James Murphy, a TikTok user with more than 160,000 followers, says as he points to text on the screen that says “April National R@pe day ?!?!”
He continues: “I don’t know where it got started and I don’t know if it’s just a really sick joke, but let me tell you something, if you think this is funny or you support this in any way, shape or form, unfollow me or get the f**k off my page.”
Other highly-viewed videos aimed to warn women to take precautions on April 24.
“So I literally just saw a video on TikTok, and I had to make a video myself because most of my followers are women,” a female TikTok user said in a video.
“And I need to make sure you guys are aware that there is a video going around on TikTok of disgusting men—rapists, child molesters, predators, just disgusting human beings—and they literally came up with a date to go around and rape women and children. You literally heard me right: women and children.”
She added: “You guys, stay indoors. I know it happens every day, but they are literally making this date especially for that. Carry what you got to carry cause I think the f**k not. Stay safe, share this.”
For support, the National Sexual Assault Hotline is available 24/7 at 1-800-656-HOPE(4673) or visit the RAINN website to chat online with a trained staff member who can provide confidential crisis support.