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U.S. Senate approves bill to force sale of TikTok

The U.S. Senate passed a bill requiring ByteDance to sell TikTok or face a ban, citing national security risks from Chinese control. President Biden is set to sign it.



The United States Senate has approved legislation demanding that ByteDance, a China-based company, sell its social media platform TikTok or risk it being banned in the United States.

This measure is part of a larger foreign aid package, which has now cleared both chambers of Congress and is awaiting President Joe Biden’s signature. Previously, the House of Representatives passed the package last Saturday.

Under the legislation, ByteDance has been allotted nine months to arrange the sale of TikTok, with an option for a three-month extension at the discretion of the president. This legislative action stems from concerns that TikTok’s ownership by a Chinese company poses risks to U.S. national security, due to potential Chinese government access to U.S. user data under China’s national security laws.

The bill was strategically included in essential foreign aid legislation by the House, compelling the Senate to address the TikTok matter sooner than expected. By extending the divestment period, the bill managed to secure more support, ultimately passing in the Senate with a decisive 79-18 vote.

Senate Commerce Committee Chair Maria Cantwell (D-WA) clarified the bill’s purpose on the Senate floor, stating, “Congress is not acting to punish ByteDance, TikTok, or any other individual company. We are acting to prevent foreign adversaries from conducting espionage, surveillance, malign operations, harming vulnerable Americans, our servicemen and women, and our U.S. government personnel.”

Senate Intelligence Committee Chair Mark Warner (D-VA) voiced concerns about the influence foreign control can have over platforms integral to U.S. commerce and communication.

He said, “The truth is, these Chinese companies, at the end of the day, don’t owe their obligation to their customers, or their shareholders, but they owe it to the PRC government.”

Warner criticized TikTok’s “Project Texas,” describing it as inadequate because it “would still allow TikTok’s algorithm, source code, and development activities to remain in China, under ByteDance control, and subject to Chinese government exploitation.”

Warner also addressed the concerns of young Americans who fear the loss of TikTok, emphasizing, “This is not an effort to take your voice away. Many of you are rightfully skeptical. You’ve not seen what Congress has seen. You’ve not been in the classified briefings that have delved more deeply into the threats posed by foreign control of TikTok.”

President Biden confirmed his intention to sign the bill, linking its importance to broader national security measures. “I will sign this bill into law and address the American people as soon as it reaches my desk tomorrow so we can begin sending weapons and equipment to Ukraine this week,” Biden stated in an official release shortly after the Senate’s passage.

Meanwhile, TikTok has indicated plans to legally challenge the legislation, signaling forthcoming legal disputes as the implementation of the bill unfolds.

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SO … this is how the US “competes”. If they can’t win, they force you to sell it to them … for a “song”. Wonder if China could use the same playbook with say Meta and their Whatsapp app (not that China needs it or want it).

It is not a shut down but a separation from head office. So it is a win for Tik ToK. Just need to set up an American Company.

So, … the US were neither convinced or persuaded by CEO Shou’s rendition of “Trust Me Mate” !!!

Anyways, … this shouldn’t stop fans of CEO Shou from continuing to support him and TikTok, just not in America though !!!