Is TikTok Going to Be Banned in the United States?
Tue, Aug 11, 2020
By Karah St. Preux
The TikTok community, and those who secretly can’t get enough of its videos, are facing a crisis at the moment. When President Donald Trump declared on July 31, 2020 that he planned to ban the popular social media app in the United States, chaos ensued.
TikTok, which first became popular in the United States in 2018, is a social app that allows users to film short videos, usually accompanied by music. With over 2 billion downloads worldwide, the app rose to social popularity in an incredibly short amount of time. Nearly 80 million people in the United States are daily users of the app and 90% of TikTok users worldwide access the app daily.
So why does President Trump wish to get rid of it? Since TikTok is owned by the Chinese company ByteDance, President Trump is concerned about the privacy of its users. He believes that the app poses a threat to national security.
“As far as TikTok is concerned, we’re banning them from the United States,” said President Trump on Friday, July 31.
There are many people looking into the risk of national security in regards to TikTok, however President Trump has already declared that he’d like the ban to be in order as of September 15, 2020 if the app isn’t purchased by an American company. Microsoft later expressed their interest in purchasing the app and it is estimated that they could pay between $10-$30 billion for it. According to the Wall Street Journal, Twitter is in preliminary discussions about a “possible connection” between the two apps.
On Friday, August 7th, Trump ordered that American firms stop doing business with the app within the next 45 days. TikTok has spoken out about the comments that Trump has said about the app, saying that they are “shocked” and may pose legal action against the United States.
So why are people so upset? TikTok has quickly become a way for people to spread creativity and use their voice. It has brought people together and it has also been a fun distraction during these unpredictable times. Many are upset because they feel as if their freedom of speech is being taken away and they will miss the sheer entertainment that TikTok has brought into the lives of so many.
While it is a form of entertainment for millions worldwide, for some it’s a career. The rise of “TikTok influencers” has increased dramatically and many of them have moved to Los Angeles to become stars and work with top talent agencies. By making viral TikTok videos, these young adults have raked in tens of thousands of dollars. Top TikTok influencers include Charlie D’Amelio, Addison Rae, Chase Hudson, Baby Ariel, and more. The potential ban may cause TikTok influencers to find an alternative way to get their income.
This wouldn’t be the first time that a beloved social media video app would no longer be available to consumers. In October of 2016, Twitter announced that Vine, their 6-second video app, would be discontinued. Millions of Vine users and lovers were devastated over this loss, and #ripvine became a trending topic. When TikTok’s popularity began to grow, many found themselves comparing it to Vine, but viewed it as a version with more features to play around with and a longer video time frame. With more countries feeling threatened by TikTok, it may be a possibility that it will meet the same fate as Vine.
This also would not be the first time that a country has banned TikTok. At the end of June 2020, the app was banned in India. The ban came shortly after 20 Indian soldiers were killed in China, which led to great tension between the two countries. TikTok’s future in the United States is still unknown, and we will have to wait and see what will happen in the near future.
How do you feel about the possible TikTok ban? Comment below!