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Shouzi Chew, CEO of TikTok, in February. Photo by Bloomberg

TikTok’s Ad Business Is Giving Us Déjà Vu

Photo: Shouzi Chew, CEO of TikTok, in February. Photo by Bloomberg

First, some news about us! I am thrilled to share that we’ve hired Karl Wells—who has been running the subscription business at Dow Jones and The Wall Street Journal—as our first chief commercial officer. Joe Pompeo broke the news for Vanity Fair. 

I’m really proud of how we’ve driven the conversation in tech journalism these past eight and a half years, and I feel really lucky to be building a business with such an amazing team and subscribers. Thank you all for being a part of it.

Déjà Vu for TikTok’s Ad Business

By now, most of the public internet advertising companies have reported their latest round of quarterly earnings—and the picture was pretty bleak. Meta Platforms was down and offered a weak forecast. Snap is slowing and offered no forecast at all. YouTube was nearly flat, and Google was worse than expected. Amazon was up! And Twitter was…well, it was busy. 

But one big kahuna hasn’t reported: privately held ByteDance, which owns TikTok. 

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