President Biden Signs TikTok Sale/Ban Bill

In a significant move, U.S. President Joe Biden signed a bill targeting TikTok’s Chinese parent company ByteDance, requiring them to divest ownership of the app within nine months. The bill, which received strong support from the U.S. Senate, also included provisions for foreign aid to American allies.

The Push Against TikTok

The signing of the bill comes amid growing concerns among both Democratic and Republican lawmakers about the potential risks posed by China’s Communist Party using TikTok to manipulate users, spread propaganda, and conduct espionage activities.

Legal Battles and Controversies

While some U.S. states had previously banned TikTok on government devices, private usage bans faced legal challenges. The future of TikTok in the U.S. remains uncertain, as the company plans to contest the ban in court to protect its presence in the market.

CEO of TikTok, Shou Zi Chew, strongly criticized the bill in a video message, arguing that it undermines the voices of American users. Despite the controversy, TikTok reported 150 million users in the U.S. and a significant contribution to the American economy.

Concerns and Allegations

TikTok has faced criticism for various reasons, including its algorithmic feed, the presence of adult content on children’s feeds, and allegations linking the app to harmful challenges like the “blackout” choking game. In response to concerns, TikTok has made changes in some regions, but scrutiny continues.

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Global Impact and Investigations

Internationally, TikTok has faced scrutiny in countries like France and Spain, where the company removed a feature from its Lite app that rewarded users for engagement. Meanwhile, the European Union remains vigilant, continuing investigations into TikTok’s practices.

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For more information on the bill and TikTok’s global controversy, check out Reuters and The Verge.