TikTok, the popular video-sharing app, is facing an uncertain future in the US as lawmakers and regulators seek to limit its influence and access to American users’ data. The app, which has over 150 million users in the US, is owned by Chinese company ByteDance, which has raised concerns about its potential ties to the Chinese government and its compliance with US laws and regulations.
The Biden administration has given ByteDance an ultimatum: sell TikTok’s US operations or face a nationwide ban. TikTok has not agreed to sell, but has tried to address the security concerns by hosting its US user data on servers operated by Oracle, a US tech giant, and by separating its US business from its global operations. TikTok’s CEO Shou Zi Chew has also testified before Congress, denying any links to the Chinese government or any requests to hand over user data.
However, these efforts have not convinced many lawmakers, who have introduced bipartisan bills that would empower the president to ban TikTok and other foreign-linked apps that pose a national security threat. The bills would give the Commerce Department broad authority to identify and mitigate the risks stemming from such apps, which could include blocking their access to app stores, internet providers, or financial transactions.
The proponents of the bills argue that TikTok could be used by China to spy on Americans, spread propaganda, censor content, or influence elections. They cite China’s national security laws that could compel ByteDance to cooperate with the Chinese government, as well as TikTok’s previous violations of US privacy and child protection laws.
The opponents of the bills claim that banning TikTok would violate free speech rights, harm competition, and alienate millions of Americans who use the app for entertainment, education, and activism. They point out that TikTok has taken steps to protect its user data and content moderation policies from foreign interference, and that there is no evidence of TikTok sharing user data with China or engaging in malicious activities.
The fate of TikTok in the US remains unclear as the bills await further debate and voting in Congress. The Biden administration has not indicated whether it supports or opposes the bills, but has said it is reviewing TikTok’s proposed deal with Oracle and other potential solutions. Meanwhile, TikTok users and creators have expressed their frustration and anxiety over the possible ban, launching online campaigns and protests to save their favorite app.
There’s a 90% chance TikTok will be banned in the US unless it goes through with an IPO or gets bought out by mega-cap tech, Wedbush says
There’s a 90% chance TikTok will be banned in the US after CEO Shou Chew gave evasive testimony to Congress, according to Wedbush.
The Biden administration has presented Chinese company ByteDance with an ultimatum: sell your popular video-sharing app, TikTok, or be banned nationwide.
The backlash against China-owned TikTok in the U.S. and other Western countries escalated in recent days, as some U.S lawmakers pushed to give President Joe Biden
Lawmakers, unconvinced after five hours of testimony from company chief Shou Zi Chew, are set on restricting the platform
Should the US ban TikTok? Can it? A cybersecurity expert explains the risks the app poses and the challenges to blocking it.
TikTok CEO Shou Zi Chew testified before the House Energy and Commerce Committee on March 23, 2023,