TikTok files lawsuit against US Government amid “political” ban

TikTok launch screen on phone in front of skyPixabay: nikuga

With the end of TikTok in the US seemingly nigh, the owners of the app have hit back against the US presidents ban by filing a legal complaint, according to a new report.

As previously reported last month, it was announced that the US president had signed an Executive Order to prohibit Bytedance – the owners of Tiktok – from doing business in the country. The Executive Order also applies to Chinese messaging app WeChat.

The controversial ban is said to be due to national security concerns, with the president raising the question of how TikTok uses US citizens’ data.

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The order read: “TikTok automatically captures vast swaths of information from its users, including Internet and other network activity information such as location data and browsing and search histories.”

However, TikTok seems set to fight back against the ban, as they alongside parent company Bytedance have reportedly filed a complaint to a Washington federal court.

In their complaint, TikTok and Bytedance claim that the ban is for “political reasons”. Additionally, in their complaint, they also explain that they are seeking a judgment that serves to “invalidat[e] and preliminarily and permanently enjoining the Prohibitions and the August 6 order”.

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Wikimedia Commons: Matti Blume / CC BY-SA (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0)
Chinese messaging app WeChat is also part of the ban, and will also be removed from app stores on September 20 and become illegal to use on November 12.

Whether or not this legal action will succeed remains to be seen, but with free speech organization American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) claiming that the TikTok ban is a violation of the company’s First Amendment right, it is clear that they have a compelling case.

How will the TikTok ban affect American users?

The Executive Order is expected to come into effect on September 20, which is when the app will be removed from app stores. This means that people will be unable to download it.

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Whilst those who currently have the app will be able to keep it, the Executive Order means that the app will be unable to be updated, meaning that any bugs or faults with the app will be unable to be fixed.

Then, on November 12, a full shutdown will be scheduled to come into effect, meaning that any usage of the app, regardless of whether it was downloaded prior to September 20 will become illegal.

Pixabay: Parampreet Chanana
From September 20, the app will be removed from app stores, and TikTok will be prohibited from providing updates to current users.

What is the future of TikTok?

There is hope that by the time this second deadline comes around, Bytedance will have succeeded in finding a suitable US buyer for TikTok.

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For a while, TikTok seemed set to be sold to Microsoft, but it appears that this deal has since fallen through. But that doesn’t mean that all is lost.

CNN reports that other organizations such as Walmart and Oracle are still in the running to acquire TikTok, so it seems like there is still hope for US-based content creators that the app still has a future.

Meanwhile, beloved TikTok stars like Charli D’Amelio and Chase Hudson have begun to say their goodbyes to the app that changed their life.

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