Tiktok Could be Banned?

Photo Credit: 5G Phones: 5G Ultra Wideband with a 5G Phone | Verizon
Photo Credit: 5G Phones: 5G Ultra Wideband with a 5G Phone | Verizon

Recently a bill consisting of a banning of TikTok from the United States of America has just been passed by the House of Representatives on Capitol Hill. So it’s time to dive deep into what this bill talks about in specifics and what it could mean for the United States.

To be clear, if this bill becomes law, it does not mean TikTok is immediately banned. It does mean TikTok’s China-based owner, Bytedance, must sell their stake in the company. This is due to National Security concerns.

If you aren’t aware, every Chinese corporation must cooperate and work with the Chinese Government. This is where the concerns of National Security come in. If Bytedance had to cooperate with the Chinese Government, a rival of the United States, then they could push pro-communist propaganda and spy on the American people.

This is very real possibility as Bytedance has access to millions of Americans’ data and has perfected its algorithm to keep people scrolling for more content, increasing their storage of people’s data.

However, this bill has also come under fire for hypocrisy. See, TikTok is not the only social media platform that collects personal information. Social Media sites like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter (now called X) also collect personal information.

The problem is that these social media sites are all owned by American companies. Facebook and Instagram are owned by Meta Platforms Inc., or just Meta, which is owned by Mark Zuckerberg. They have a laundry list of accusations that have taken them to court and congressional hearings.

Then there’s Twitter which is owned by X Holdings Corp, which is owned by Elon Musk. Yet both of these companies, who are accused of doing the same things, are not under legislative fire by Congress.

Organizations like the Foundation for Individual Rights and Expression or FIRE showed that on December 23rd, 2022, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (The FBI) and the Department of Homeland Security warned Twitter of misinformation about the Hunter Biden Laptop Story. Essentially, they were found trying to suppress the story to make sure that it didn’t mess with the election results for Joe Biden.

went out and asked some people what they thought about this new bill. Sara Veronica, a freshman said, “Girls in my class keep doing TikTok dances and it hurts my brain for real.”  In 10th grade, Brandon Colon said “China made Tik Tok cringey, I can’t believe it.”

This bill is claimed to be for National Security but does come off as hypocritical when social media companies do the same thing TikTok is accused of doing. What this shows is that it’s ok for US government manipulation but not Chinese government manipulation.

Besides all of that, the bill is expected to pass the Senate and President Joe Biden has said he would sign a bill attempting to regulate or even ban TikTok from the states. This is because of the bill being attached to a larger Foreign Aid Package for Ukraine, Israel, and other US Allies, at least according to CBS News on April 23rd, 2024.

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