TikTok ban live updates: House Republicans to vote on bill despite Trump’s opposition

<p>Election 2024 Trump TikTok</p>

Election 2024 Trump TikTok

(Copyright 2024 The Associated Press. All rights reserved)

The process to launch an official ban on TikTok in the US could begin today.

The House will vote on a Bill that might block the app for all users across the country, citing national security. It is expected to pass.

If it is successful, it will require the Chinese firm Bytedance to divest from TikTok and other applications that it owns within six months. If that does not happen, then the app would be banned.

Legislators have argued that Bytedance could give the Chinese government access to TikTok user’s data, pointing to national security laws that require companies to help with intelligence gathering.

A success in the House vote is just a first step towards an official ban. The Senate must agree on it and then Joe Biden must sign it – though he has indicated that he will.


Voting begins

Lawmakers now have 15 minutes to vote on the bill.

Andrew Griffin13 March 2024 14:07


Representative Thomas Massey, opposing the bill, says that the bill’s primary consequence will be in helping Facebook. It’s hard to disagree with this: if you go on Instagram Reels (or YouTube Shorts, or similar) they’re mostly the same content from TikTok.

Andrew Griffin13 March 2024 14:03


Data could still be used

Republican representative David Schweikert notes a problem in the ban: the data in TikTok has already been taken. So even if Bytedance divests, that data could be parcelled up, sold and distributed, he warns.

He says that data should be treated as a private property right.

Andrew Griffin13 March 2024 13:59


Andrew Griffin13 March 2024 13:57


Bill is ‘not an attempt to ban TikTok’, says Pelosi

Nancy Pelosi has said the bill is “not an attempt to ban TikTok” but rather a move to fix it.

(The bill does not actually ban the app immediately. It requires parent company Bytedance to divest – or face the threat of a ban in six months.)

Andrew Griffin13 March 2024 13:56


Lawmakers describe ban as a ‘band aid’

One of the common arguments by opponents of the new bill is that it is really just a superficial response to the bigger concerns: the Chinese government could still spread misinformation and gather data if it wanted to, they have noted.

They have also argued that it could do significant damage to the people who rely on it. And they say that there is a free speech concern in allowing any future president to ban apps.

Andrew Griffin13 March 2024 13:54


AOC says bill is ‘rushed’

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez says that there are “serious antitrust and privacy questions”, but that the bill was rushed. She won’t be supporting it.

Andrew Griffin13 March 2024 13:53


Lawmakers are now debating the bill – with impassioned arguments from both sides.

Opponents of TikTok say that it is dangerously close to the Chinese government, and that the app could be used to spy on American citizens.

Proponents say that despite the concerns about privacy and misinformation, it provides a useful tool to Americans, and that it is unfair to ban only TikTok.

Andrew Griffin13 March 2024 13:52


Robert F Kennedy opposes ban

Robert F Kennedy, who hopes to be president, has indicated that he will oppose the ban.

Andrew Griffin13 March 2024 13:51


Numbers show why a total block could be so devastating

TikTok has grown fast, and is now one of the most widely used and positively views apps available. That could make any possible ban difficult and controversial.

Andrew Griffin13 March 2024 13:44

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