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True Crime on TikTok: The Power of Online Communities in the Search for Missing Persons

A month ago, Nancy Ng, a 29-year-old Asian-American SoCal resident, went kayaking on Lake Atitl├ín in Guatemala as part of a yoga retreat. Unfortunately, this would be the last time anyone saw her. As her family continues to plead for help, TikTok’s true crime community has come together to amplify the story and aid in the search for Ng.

While TikTok’s true crime community has received criticism in the past for its focus on missing white women and the spreading of wild conspiracy theories, Ng’s case has been approached differently. Videos about Ng have garnered over 18.2 million views on TikTok alone, with many creators simply sharing verified information from Ng’s family and encouraging others to spread the news. Ng’s sister even gave an interview with content creator Stephanie Soo.

The online community’s efforts to keep the narrative based on confirmed sources have not been completely successful, as unsubstantiated conspiracy theories have circulated on platforms like Reddit and smaller crime accounts. Some theories suggest Ng’s death was a coordinated hate crime or a cult-based sacrifice the yoga retreat.

One reason for the spread of these theories could be the lack of information regarding Ng’s disappearance. Guatemalan authorities believe Ng drowned, but conflicting accounts about the last time she was seen have fueled interest in the case. The owners of the rental business, Kayak Guatemala, stated that eight members of Ng’s group returned together, but Ng’s kayak and another woman’s were spotted in the distance. The woman returned with the two kayaks, but Ng was missing.

Ng’s family has spent the past four weeks seeking information from members of the yoga retreat, including the woman last seen with Ng, Christina Blazek. However, no one responded to their inquiries. Blazek’s attorney, G. Christopher Gardner, stated that his client cooperated with law enforcement and refrained from responding due to trauma and threats.

Despite the challenges, Ng’s family has raised over $90,000 on GoFundMe to support the search efforts. Online communities, including Asian content creators, have played a significant role in spreading awareness and keeping Ng’s case from going cold. Rescue operations have conducted extensive searches of the lake, but there has been no significant progress.

As the search continues, Ng’s family hopes for answers and to bring Nancy home. The power of online communities, particularly TikTok’s true crime community, has demonstrated its potential in contributing to the search for missing persons and providing support to their families.

FAQ

1. How has TikTok’s true crime community been involved in the search for Nancy Ng?

TikTok users have shared verified information from Ng’s family and encouraged others to spread news about her case. Videos about Ng have garnered millions of views, creating awareness and generating support for the search efforts.

2. Are there any conspiracy theories surrounding Nancy Ng’s disappearance?

Yes, unsubstantiated conspiracy theories speculating about the circumstances of Ng’s death have circulated on platforms like Reddit and smaller crime accounts. These theories range from coordinated hate crimes to cult-based sacrifices.

3. What challenges have hindered the investigation into Ng’s disappearance?

Conflicting accounts about the last time Ng was seen have created challenges in determining what happened to her. Additionally, the lack of information and responses from members of the yoga retreat, including the woman last seen with Ng, have added to the difficulty in getting answers.

4. How much money has Ng’s family raised for the search?

Ng’s family has raised over $90,000 on GoFundMe to support the search efforts and bring Ng home.

5. What role have online communities, especially Asian content creators, played in Ng’s case?

Online communities, particularly TikTok’s true crime community and Asian content creators, have played a significant role in spreading awareness about Ng’s case and supporting her family. Their efforts have helped keep the case from going cold and contributed to fundraising for the search.