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Will TikTok Be Banned in the United States?

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Real Estate Technology with AgencyLogic

Source: Statista

On Wednesday, the U.S. House of Representatives passed a bill that would force TikTok’s parent company ByteDance to sell the popular social media platform in order to cut any ties between TikTok, its current parent company and the Chinese government. The bill, officially called “Protecting Americans from Foreign Adversary Controlled Applications Act”, alleges that TikTok is at least indirectly controlled by the Chinese Communist Party, allowing the latter to “surveil and influence the American public” and thus poses “an unacceptable risk to U.S. national security.”

The bill essentially says that ByteDance must sell TikTok or at least the U.S. arm of it to a company that has no ties to a “foreign adversary” within six months. If that is not the case, it would be unlawful for app stores and web hosting companies to distribute the app in the United States. But there are a lot of hurdles left to clear: Aside from the fact that the bill still faces a long legislative process and is widely considered unlikely to pass the Senate, it would be hard to find a buyer for what is one of the most popular social media platforms in the U.S. and globally. Paradoxically, the few companies that could afford to buy TikTok would likely be banned from doing so. Meta for example, already under antitrust scrutiny for its social media dominance, would never be allowed by the FTC to acquire another hugely popular social media platform.

In recent years, TikTok has surged in popularity in the U.S. and across the globe, captivating users with easily consumable content. With its innovative short-form video format, TikTok has become a cultural phenomenon, influencing trends in music, dance, comedy and beyond. Its algorithm-driven content recommendation system has proven highly effective in keeping users engaged, inspiring other social media platforms to turn lean heavily into algorithm recommendations as well (hello Instagram!).

According to Statista Consumer Insights, 4 in 10 U.S. adults aged 18 to 64 regularly used TikTok in 2023, making it the fourth most popular social media platform in the U.S., trailing only Facebook, YouTube and Instagram. That’s up from just 14 percent in 2020, showing how quickly TikTok has established itself as a key player in the social media landscape following its launch arrival in the United States in 2018. As our chart shows, the app is particularly popular among younger users with almost 60 percent of 18 to 29-year-olds using it regularly. It is also the most popular social media platform for U.S. teens according to another recent survey, which is why some lawmakers fear it could be used by the CCP to “indoctrinate” the American youth.

Infographic: Will TikTok Be Banned in the United States? | Statista
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Michael Jacobs
Pasadena, CA
Pasadena And Southern California 818.516.4393

Hello Stephen - the term "unintended consequences" comes to mind when this discussion becomes chatter du jour.  We shall see where this leads...   

Mar 19, 2024 05:49 PM