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Charlotte TikToker goes viral asking people their salary

Jun 16, 2022

Adam Ali has gained more than a million likes going around Charlotte asking people how much they make.

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Revealing how much you make to coworkers and your family is becoming less taboo. 

For the past two months, Adam Ali has gone around Charlotte asking people to reveal how much they make for his TikTok account "American Income."

"It is not easy, convincing random people to tell you how much they make," Ali said. "Some people feel like that's an invasion of privacy."

It all started from Ali's own curiosity about how much people were actually making.

"After going to college for about a year, I myself was having trouble figuring out what I wanted to do, what profession I wanted to be in," Ali said. 

While figuring out his own life, people have been following along on social media. In just two months, Ali's TikTok account has gained more than 87,000 followers and more than 1.6 million likes. 

Ali said with so many nationally recognized schools in North Carolina, it's been surprising to see how much young people are making. 

"We have a bunch of talent here in the state, we have the second-largest bank and capital in the United States," Ali said. "It's surprising how much young people are getting paid."

By asking about salary, Ali is tapping into a growing trend across the country.

A recent Bankrate survey found that 42% of Gen Zers (ages 18-25)  and 40% of millennials (ages 26-41) say they’ve shared their salary with a coworker or a professional contact.

Older generations are less likely to share their salary. The Bankrate survey found 31% of Gen Xers (ages 42-57) and 19% of baby boomers (ages 58-76) have revealed their salaries. 

"There are so many factors that make younger people more likely to break these taboos," Sarah Foster, an analyst at Bankrate said. "I think social media is a major part of it, it's made people more comfortable with being open."

Foster said the Great Resignation is leading to a new level of urgency when it comes to salary transparency.

"It's only going to help with your wallet, as far as making sure that you get a raise or know that you're being paid fairly," Foster said.

If you're looking to reveal your salary to a coworker. Foster recommends disclosing it out of the office and off of slack so you're not revealing your pay on company time.  

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