US TikTok ban: How Quickly Could the app be Banned after Congress Passed Legislation?

The Senate has adopted a bill that would prohibit TikTok from the US unless its Chinese owner, ByteDance, sells the company. This means that the app could soon be forced out of the country.

With millions of users worldwide, the video-sharing app is under increasing scrutiny for its connections to the Chinese government and the security of user data.

Legislation enacted by the House of Representatives and the Senate now requires the platform’s parent business to sell, among other things.

The president, Joe Biden, has promised to enact the prohibition.

Why and by whom does the US wish to outlaw TikTok?
Both major US political parties’ legislators have pushed for legislation that would outlaw TikTok unless ByteDance consents to sell the app to a

They worry that ByteDance may be compelled by the Chinese government to provide information about the 170 million US users of TikTok. TikTok is adamant that it will not provide Chinese authorities access to user data from overseas users.

A $95 billion (£76 billion) foreign aid bill that includes funding for Taiwan, Israel, and Ukraine was adopted by House members on April 21. This bill also paves the path for the forced sale of TikTok.

The bill was approved by the Senate on April 23 and will now be forwarded to President Biden for his signature.

American officials have already attempted to take down TikTok.

When he was president of the United States in 2020, Donald Trump attempted to outlaw the app.

However, Mr. Trump, who is officially the Republican nominee for president in 2024, has opposed the new law, claiming that restricting TikTok will unfairly benefit Facebook.

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When might there be a TikTok ban?

The prohibition will not go into force right away, even if Mr. Biden approves the legislation.

In fact, it might take a few years before Americans are unable to use the software because ByteDance is suing to stop the forced sale, probably all the way up to the Supreme Court.

Additionally, before any ban takes effect, the measure permits ByteDance nine months to sell TikTok to an American buyer, plus an extra three months of grace.

This indicates that the sale deadline would probably occur in 2025, following the inauguration of the 2024 presidential winner. Should Mr. Trump be elected, he might try to stop the ban from going into effect.

How would a ban on TikTok operate?

The easiest method for the US to outlaw TikTok would be to take it out of app stores, like the ones run by Google and Apple for iOS and Android smartphones.

Since most people receive their programmes from app stores for their smartphones and tablets, the prohibition would prevent new users from downloading TikTok.

This implies that users of the app would no longer be eligible to get upgrades in the future that would have fixed bugs or increased security.

The US bill prohibits updates and maintenance in the US for applications under the authority of US adversarial nations.

It grants the president wide authority to impose restrictions on applications linked to North Korea, China, Iran, and Russia.

Regarding the legislation, what action has TikTok promised to take?

TikTok has harshly criticised the bill, claiming that it violates the US Constitution’s guarantee of free speech.

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CEO Shou Zi Chew issued a warning, stating that the law will jeopardise thousands of American employment and provide “more power to a handful of other social media companies”.

Beijing has threatened to block ByteDance’s efforts to sell TikTok, so the company would need permission from Chinese authorities before doing so.

What is the reaction of US TikTok users?
The potential restriction has also drawn criticism from several US authors and users.

At a demonstration outside the White House, Tiffany Yu, a teenage disability advocate from Los Angeles, told the BBC that the platform was essential to her job.

TikTok urged its 170 million American users to get in touch with their legislators and request that they oppose the bill.

However, it’s possible that the flood of “confused” calls that TikTok users made to senators and congressmen backfired.

A number of lawmakers said that the campaign has made their worries about the app worse and has made them more determined to enact the legislation.

Is TikTok prohibited in other nations?

Should the bill get into US law, it might spur like actions abroad.

Before TikTok was banned in June 2020, one of its biggest markets was India, where it was already prohibited.

Additionally, Iran, Nepal, Afghanistan, and Somalia have prohibited it.

In 2023, TikTok was prohibited from being used on employee work devices by the UK government, Parliament, and European Commission.

Concerns about security also prompted the BBC to recommend that employees remove TikTok from company phones.

How does TikTok operate, and what kind of user information does it gather?

TikTok’s algorithm is its core component.

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This is a set of guidelines in the app that decides what content users see based on information about how they have interacted with past content.

On their app, users may choose between three major feeds: Following, Friends, and For You.

The programme creates the For You feed automatically, but the Following and Friends feeds show users content from people they have choose to follow and who have followed them back.

Users searching for fresh content and creators vying for the millions of views TikTok videos may garner when they go viral now mostly visit this carefully curated feed.

The app’s highly customised approach is allegedly powered by more data collection than other social networking sites, according to critics.

This can contain details about the user’s device, location, the material they interact with, and the patterns of keystrokes they employ when typing.

However, well-known social media programmes like Facebook and Instagram gather comparable user data.

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