How The Tonight Show fixed its TikTok mistake

TikTok (Photo Illustration by Chesnot/Getty Images)
TikTok (Photo Illustration by Chesnot/Getty Images) /

The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon came under fire recently for a segment on viral TikTok dances featuring social media personality Addison Rae. After the initial segment failed to credit the original creators, The Tonight Show fixed its mistake on Monday night.

Many people on social media pointed out the choreographers were not credited during the March segment with Rae. It was also acknowledged that most of the choreographers were Black, leading to a discussion on how content from minority creators was being repackaged by white entertainers.

Addison Rae’s appearance on The Tonight Show was very popular. The original YouTube clip of “Addison Rae Teaches Jimmy Eight TikTok Dances” has amassed over three million views with millions more coming via Facebook and Twitter.

The Tonight Show was off in the week following the backlash but on Monday night, Jimmy Fallon addressed the controversy. He acknowledged the mistake and then put the spotlight on the original creators of the viral TikTok dances:

The Tonight Show showcases some of TikTok’s best creators and choreographers

It was definitely a mistake to have Addison Rae give a demonstration of viral TikTok dances without some way of acknowledging who created them. Flashing the creators’ names or TikTok handles wouldn’t have been perfect but it would have been better than nothing.

The Tonight Show could have let this story fade with time or try to gloss over it with a tweet. Instead, it spent nearly 12 minutes showcasing some of TikTok’s most creative personalities. Mya Nicole Johnson, Chris Cotter, Dorien Scott, Fur-Quan Powell, Camyra Franklin, Adam Snyder, Nate Nale, Greg Dahl, and Keara Wilson all got their chance to appear on The Tonight Show and bring their dances to a new audience.

For the most part, people online were happy to see The Tonight Show correct its mistake. Clearly, everyone involved with the show learned a valuable lesson. The incident also brought attention to the larger issue of ownership over artistic content and how that can be lost when it moves around social media.

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Were you glad to see The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon address the controversy surrounding its TikTok dance video? Share your thoughts in the comment section below.