Biden makes TikTok ban official, ByteDance has one year to sell

  • US President Joe Biden has officially signed into law a bill that includes the potential banning of TikTok.
  • The owner of the social media platform, ByteDance, would have to divest within 12 months if TikTok still wishes to operate in North America.
  • At this stage, TikTok reportedly plans to contest the law.

It is official. US President Joe Biden has signed a bill into law that would compel Chinese company ByteDance to divest its ownership in the widely popular social media platform TikTok within the next year, or face a fully fledged ban in the United States.

This is something that has been brewing for some time, with TikTok CEO Shou Chew appearing several times before US congresspeople in order to answer questions alleging that the app spies on citizens.

While there has been no concrete evidence to support the claims, as well as there being a massive data localisation project underway from TikTok in the US with the help of Oracle to ease any privacy concerns, the TikTok ban bill is now a reality.

As mentioned earlier, now ByteDance has up to one year to divest its ownership in TikTok should the app wish to continue to operate Stateside. This is double the previous timeframe of six months that a prior draft set out, but ultimately failed to pass in the US Senate.

At the time of writing, it remains to be seen if Bytedance will ultimately acquiesce, but a TikTok spokesperson has noted that the company plans to contest the law per The Verge, which could see the year-long stipulation be pushed out a few months.

“As we continue to challenge this unconstitutional ban, we will continue investing and innovating to ensure TikTok remains a space where Americans of all walks of life can safely come to share their experiences, find joy, and be inspired,” the spokesperson, Alex Haurek explained.

Chew has also weighed in on the matter, and appears to be using it as a rallying cry for TikTok users in the States to make their voices heard over the matter.

“Make no mistake, this is a ban,” he stated in the video embedded below. “A ban on TikTok and a ban on you and your voice,” he added.

It’s unclear whether other countries will follow the stance taken by the United States, as well as how China will react to US apps and platforms operating within its borders on the back of this latest development.

Either way, the TikTok ban is pushing ahead Stateside.

[Image – Photo by Solen Feyissa on Unsplash]


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