TikTok is on the verge of a US ban as President Biden prepares to sign a bill

The US Senate has greenlit a contentious landmark bill that could lead to TikTok’s prohibition in America. Under the legislation, TikTok’s Chinese parent company, ByteDance, has nine months to divest its stake, failing which the app faces a block in the United States. The bill is now slated for President Joe Biden’s signature, who has affirmed his intention to enact it promptly.

ByteDance has yet to issue a direct response to this development, although previously it expressed opposition to any coercion for TikTok’s sale. Any potential deal to sell TikTok would require approval from Chinese authorities, but Beijing has vowed to resist such endeavors, a process experts anticipate could extend over several years.

This measure was bundled with a suite of four bills, including military aid for Ukraine, Israel, Taiwan, and other US allies in the Indo-Pacific region. It garnered substantial bipartisan backing, with 79 Senators voting in favor and 18 against.

Senator Marco Rubio, the lead Republican on the Intelligence Committee, hailed the move as a necessary step to wrest control of one of America’s most popular apps from the Chinese Communist party, a sentiment echoed by many lawmakers.

Concerns about potential data breaches and the transfer of sensitive information to China have spurred Congressional efforts to sever TikTok’s ties with its Beijing-based parent company. TikTok, however, contends that ByteDance is not beholden to any foreign government and underscores its multinational ownership structure.

ByteDance’s CEO, Shou Zi Chew, has reaffirmed the company’s commitment to defending the platform through all available legal means. Nevertheless, a protracted legal battle is anticipated, which could endure for approximately two years, according to legal experts.

In response to the looming threat of a ban, TikTok has mounted a robust lobbying campaign and rallied its user base to oppose the legislation. University of Richmond law professor Carl Tobias predicts a protracted legal dispute, suggesting that the failure to find a buyer for ByteDance’s stake within the stipulated nine-month period could further delay any action against TikTok in the US.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *