TikTok announced Monday that it’s hosting a virtual talent show on TikTok Live to reward aspiring artists, giving them a chance to win up to 500,000 Diamond rewards. The event is called “Gimme the Mic” and will take place in September.
Starting today through August 16, participants 18 years and older can register on the audition page in the app. Users must post a submission video that’s a minimum of 30 seconds long with the hashtag #GimmeTheMic. According to the terms and conditions, the audition can’t be a duplicate video that the creator has published before, be sexually explicit or promote alcohol/illegal substances.
TikTok will select 30 participants from the audition round who will then go on to the Semi-Final (September 1–3), where they must compete in pairs and perform multi-guest live videos on the @tiktoklive_us account. Fans vote for their favorite performances in real time.
On September 10, the top ten contestants will compete in the U.S. Grand Finale, followed by a Global Finale on September 22 and 23. The winner of the U.S. Grand Finale will get the U.S. Gimme The Mic champion title and receive 50,000 Diamond rewards. (For reference, Diamond rewards are virtual credits that TikTok creators get on live videos when viewers send gifts. Diamonds can be exchanged for real money.)
Meanwhile, the Global Finale will feature contestants from around the world. Winners earn a trophy, up to 500,0000 Diamond rewards, and get the opportunity to be featured on official TikTok channels.
Like any reality TV talent series, TikTok’s new global competition aims to support emerging music creators, giving them a popular platform to share their talent.
TikTok has long been a hub for music promotion, back when the popular app was Musical.ly, which parent company ByteDance acquired in 2017. The platform is responsible for making many songs go viral and helping emerging artists get discovered. For example, 27-year-old singer-songwriter-rapper Tai Verdes was working at a Verizon store when his hit single “Stuck in the Middle” grabbed the attention of millions of TikTok users. There are currently 3.5 million videos using the song.
Today’s announcement comes as TikTok ramps up its focus on music to compete with rivals like YouTube and Spotify. Recently, TikTok launched a new program, Elevate, to help rising artists with careers in the music industry. The company also launched “TikTok Music,” its new subscription-only music streaming service in Brazil, Indonesia, Australia, Mexico and Singapore.