The United States passes a ban on Tiktok

The United States passes a ban on Tiktok

Earlier this year, the House of Representatives, Senate, and President Joe Biden passed a bill to ban TikTok. The ban will occur in early 2025 if ByteDance, the Chinese company that owns TikTok, does not sell the app to a United States company within nine months of the bill being passed. President Biden will have the option to extend the ban date by 90 days if there seems to be progress towards a sale.

However, a Cable News Network article states that ByteDance has “no plans” to sell their service. The company believes that TikTok is too valuable to sell. The social media platform is estimated to have a net worth of around $100 billion.

“Rest assured: we aren’t going anywhere,” said TikTok CEO Shou Chew. “We are confident we will keep fighting for [users] rights in the courts.

According to National Public Radio News, if ByteDance does not sell TikTok, it will become illegal for app stores to offer the app until it is no longer controlled by a “foreign adversary.” Following the ban, internet service providers would also be obligated to make TikTok unavailable on U.S. internet browsers. However, TikTok would not disappear from phones in the U.S. completely. Americans would no longer be able to download or update the app, making it harder to function over time.

A New York Times article explains that the U.S. Government is concerned with the amount of control that ByteDance has over TikTok users. They are also concerned that ByteDance, being the sole owner of TikTok, has the ability to access user data and deliver that data to the Chinese government.

“Today, we will take the first step in creating long-overdue laws to protect Americans from the threat posed by apps controlled by our adversaries, and to send a very strong message that the U.S. will always stand up for our values and freedom,” said Washington Republican Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers, the House panel’s chair.

With TikTok having nearly 150 million monthly users in the U.S., the ban will likely have a variety of opinions from users.

“About two in three young people in the U.S. have a TikTok account,” said Andrew Pryzybylski, professor of human behavior and technology at Oxford University. “The primary challenge is going to be on freedom of speech and freedom of expression.”

The TikTok ban is still impending, as it is not clear if ByteDance will be able to sell it to an American company or not. If ByteDance is unable to sell the app by early 2025, the ban will be officially implemented.

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