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House Passes Bill To Force TikTok Sale From Chinese-Owned Parent Company ByteDance Or Face US Ban

  /  03.13.2024

Today (March 13), the House passed legislation requiring TikTok‘s parent company, ByteDance, to divest the app or face a U.S. ban.

The bill, which drew bipartisan support, passed with a 352-65 vote due to concerns over national security, free speech, and the influence of social media. The news came on the heels of TikTok appealing to its 170 million U.S. users for opposition. Earlier this month, call-to-action on the platform read, “Let Congress know what TikTok means to you and tell them to vote NO.”

The legislation notably mandated ByteDance to sell TikTok to a non-Chinese entity within six months to address national security concerns. Failure to do so would result in the app’s ban in the U.S. 

“[This] forces TikTok to break up with the Chinese Communist Party,” Representative Mike Gallagher emphasized. “This is a common-sense measure to protect our national security.”

“This process was secret and the bill was jammed through for one reason: It’s a ban,” a TikTok spokesperson told CNBC. “We are hopeful that the Senate will consider the facts, listen to their constituents, and realize the impact on the economy, 7 million small businesses, and the 170 million Americans who use our service.”

Peep social media’s reaction below.

TikTok rose to prominence in 2018, and according to The Guardian, it was the most downloaded app of 2019, 2020, and 2021. The social media network’s dominance was mainly due to its focus on viral content, music integrations, and user-generated content, such as dance challenges and trends. Celebrities like Cardi B, Lil Nas X, Coi Leray, Megan Thee Stallion, DDG, Latto, and several more are also on the platform.

In February, Universal Music Group (UMG) officially removed its artists’ music catalogs from TikTok. The move resulted in videos using songs licensed by the music corporation being muted. Subsequently, users were forced to pick a different track or use an original sound.

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