What Does GDK Mean on TikTok? Why You Should Think Twice Before Using the Symbol

Distractify Staff - Author

Dec. 6 2023, Published 11:47 a.m. ET

The Gist:

  • TikTok users worldwide have been saying "GDK" on the platform and using a symbol associated with GDK as a trend.
  • GDK, short for Gangster Disciple Killers, is used by those who stand against the Chicago gang Gangster Disciples.
  • Celebrities like Pop Smoke, Fivio Foreign, 21 Savage, and King Combs have mentioned GDK in music and on social media.
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Whether you’re a casual scroller or an avid creator, those with a TikTok account are familiar with the app’s ever-changing trends. One minute, you could be showing off dance moves to a Sean Paul song, and the nex, you could be “putting a finger down” for all of the traumas that apply to you. You never really know with TikTok.

The app’s diversity in trends is a snapshot of the people who use it and help make the trends what they are. Unfortunately, too often, those who partake in certain trends don’t know it can mean something entirely different to someone else.

Many TikTok users have begun using a hand symbol in their content. On the surface, the hand symbol looks like a half-heart. But users have confirmed the symbol means someone is GDK, an insult known by many familiar with OGs.

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So, what does GDK stand for? Here’s what to know.

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What does GDK mean on TikTok?

GDK began to be a hot topic on TikTok in 2021. After realizing many users were using a half heart as a trend to discuss things they don’t like, such as “people who rarely hit u up to hang out” or “girls who are 5’5,” TikTok user Jay (@jaygobrazzyy), highlighted the fact that the symbol looks eerily similar to GDK.

“That s--t looks just like GDK,” Jay shared on camera. “You can’t say it doesn’t.”

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The GDK symbol is associated with the phrase "Gangster Disciple Killer." While the GDK symbol looks like a half-heart, it's really a pitchfork, a sign associated with the Gangster Disciples. According to the U.S. Department of Justice, Gangster Disciples began in 1974 and, as of 2023, has nearly 3,000 members in Chicago and has a history of being "one of the most powerful and dangerous gangs in the Nation."

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Those who don't respect or have beef with Gangster Disciples, also known as GDs, use the GDK symbol and say it to confirm they kill GDs. According to Urban Dictionary, anyone who doesn't agree or wants to kill GDs can rep GDK, though the symbol has been most widely used by members of GDs' rival gang, Black Disciples.

As TikTok creator The Hood University (@quanodag) explained in his April 2023 TikTok, saying or doing the GDK or BDK symbols means you're against either respective gang. Another term, Everybody Killer (EBK), means you have beef and/or could kill anyone who steps in your way.

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Celebrities have said or used GDK publicly.

While those who used the GDK symbol on TikTok likely had no idea how sinister the gang sign could be, rumors have swirled that some celebrities know exactly which hood they’re repping.

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GDK became popular in the hip-hop community, particularly in drill and trap music. Several rappers like 21 Savage, the late Pop Smoke, and Fivio Foreign have referenced GDK in their songs. Per HipHop DX, Fivio Foreign reportedly confirmed he was associated with the gang in his lyrics, stating, “You say you ain’t GDK / What the f--k is you doin’ with me?”

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King Combs, son of Sean “Diddy” Combs, also gave signs that he is against GDs after he used the GDK symbol publicly. In December 2023, a video obtained by No Jumper showed King throwing up the sign and saying “GDK” on camera as his girlfriend Raven Tracy grabbed his face.

King’s video received backlash from people like Chicago rapper King Yella. King Yella responded to King Combs’ GDK sign by stating, “Why would you even try and involve yourself in a GDK movement? You were born rich and famous. What are you doing?”Amid the backlash, King Combs apologized and confirmed he’s not in a gang on his Instagram Stories.

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“I ain’t affiliated with no gangs and I'm not a gang member!!” he wrote.

Much like King Combs, those using GDK, be it intentionally or unintentionally, should be mindful of what they’re doing, since the symbol can have dangerous consequences.

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