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Lawmakers announce bipartisan bid to ban TikTok in the US

TikTok asks courts to clarify status of potential sale as deadline approaches
Posted at 3:54 PM, Dec 13, 2022
and last updated 2022-12-14 20:35:26-05

Legislation announced on Tuesday aims to try and ban China's popular social media app TikTok.

GOP Sen. Marco Rubio announced a bipartisan bill this week that will work to stop the app's use amid fears that it could be used to spy on Americans.

He wrote in a press release:
“The federal government has yet to take a single meaningful action to protect American users from the threat of TikTok. This isn’t about creative videos — this is about an app that is collecting data on tens of millions of American children and adults every day. We know it’s used to manipulate feeds and influence elections. We know it answers to the People’s Republic of China. There is no more time to waste on meaningless negotiations with a CCP-puppet company. It is time to ban Beijing-controlled TikTok for good.”

It will increase pressure on TikTok's parent company, ByteDance Ltd., as lawmakers say the app can be used to monitor the private activity of users and censure content.

The Anti-Social CCP Act would try and prohibit and block transactions from any social media organization that is "under the influence" of Russia, Iran, China, North Korea, Cuba or Venezuela.

As Forbes reports, the act's language only refers to TikTok as an example.

This is just the latest news targeting the video platform. Alabama, Utah. and Iowa all banned TikTok on government devices this month, citing security concerns.

Earlier this year, attorneys general from at least eight states launched an investigation into whether the app violates consumer protection laws.

Recently, researchers with the Center for Countering Digital Hate found that TikTok algorithms appeared to promote videos related to self-harm and eating disorders to teens.

A study found that accounts created for fictional teens in multiple countries saw more videos about self-harm and eating disorders, especially after liking related videos. Some of the images contained razor blades and discussions of death by suicide.