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TikTok May Be Banned In The U.S. As Congress Pass A Bill That Requires App Be Sold Or Blocked

The U.S. Congress has passed a controversial bill that could lead to the banning of the popular short video app TikTok in the United States.

Under the bill, TikTok’s parent company, Bytedance, is required to divest from the app, or else the app will be banned outright in the U.S.

The bill received overwhelming bipartisan support during debate, passing by landslide 352-65 during voting.

Next, the bill will be reviewed by the Senate and if concurred then presented to President Joe Biden, who has promised to sign it.

Following that, Bytedance will have six months to divest from TikTok. Failure to meet this deadline will result in the app being blocked nationwide.

The vote took place only weeks after the bill was introduced, with only one public hearing on the matter. Congressional action on this issue had been stalled for over a year.

TikTok CEO Shou Zi Chew (pictured) was at Capitol Hill on Wednesday on a previously scheduled trip to talk to senators.

Last month, the involvement of President Biden’s re-election campaign on TikTok raised hopes the legislation would not be passed this year.

Washington is worried at the potential U.S. national security risks over huge data on American citizens being collected by the app could be accessible to the Chinese communist government.

Other areas of U.S. national security worries related to China that may be targeted in future are connected vehicles, advanced artificial intelligence chips and operations at US ports many of which use advanced Chinese technology and equipments.

TikTok Fumes Over Bill

The TikTok company fumed at the passing of the bill in the House on Wednesday.

In a statement quickly and angrily released moments after the vote, TikTok said the Congress overlooked “the impact on the economy, seven million small businesses, and 170 million Americans who use our service”, and complained that “This process was secret and the bill was jammed through for one reason: it’s a ban“, the app maker said.

Before becoming law, the bill has to be concurred by the U.S. Senate where a bitter legislative battle will be waged soon. TikTok says it hopes the upper chamber “will consider the facts” and “listen to their constituents” – Americans. 

Panic Reaction by TikTok Users In America

American influencers were thrown into a frenzy upon receiving alert the bill passed in the House of Representatives on Wednesday, with many expressing fears the potential ban could disrupt their careers, and raised worries about constitutional rights of First Amendment.

In a video garnering almost 250K likes, one influencer described herself as a “panicked influencer” exclaimed, “We might have to part ways and bid farewell tomorrow because what the actual freak?

Prominent personalities like Donald Trump and Elon Musk both big advocates to freedom of expression were opposed to the app ban.

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Dominic Ojielo
Dominic Ojielohttps://joliba.com.ng
Summaries of important Nigerian, African and global news - 24/7

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