Connect with us

Net Influencer

Could This Be TikTok's Last Dance In The U.S. New Bill Demands ByteDance Divestment In 5 Months


Could This Be TikTok’s Last Dance In The U.S.? New Bill Demands ByteDance Divestment In 5 Months

Nearly a year after TikTok CEO Shou Zi Chew’s controversial hearing on Capitol Hill, Congress continues grappling with how to regulate the world’s leading short-form video app. The latest proposal comes from a bipartisan group of U.S. Congress members aiming to force ByteDance to divest TikTok.

Could This Be TikTok’s Last Dance In The U.S.? New Bill Demands ByteDance Divestment In 5 Months

The bill was introduced in the House by members of the House Select Committee on the Chinese Communist Party – Chair Mike Gallagher (R-WI) and Ranking Member Raja Krishnamoorthi (D-IL). Their legislation targets “Foreign Adversary Controlled Applications” from countries like Iran, Russia, North Korea, and ByteDance’s home nation China. ByteDance and TikTok are even explicitly named.

If passed into law, ByteDance would have five months to divest TikTok. Failure to comply would result in the app’s removal from U.S. app stores and web hosting services.

Last year saw two proposals – the House’s DATA Act targeting apps sending U.S. data to China, and the bipartisan RESTRICT Act in the Senate using similar “foreign adversaries” language as Gallagher and Krishnamoorthi’s bill. Congress has struggled to agree on the optimal TikTok regulations.

The latest House bill appears a compromise. It contains anti-Chinese Communist Party rhetoric common on the American right but also grants the U.S. President power to designate additional foreign adversary-controlled apps.

After revising the RESTRICT Act, Senator Maria Cantwell (D-WA) stressed involving both legislative and executive branches, stating “The President should undertake a rulemaking process to protect United States data…while preserving freedom of expression and rights under the Constitution.”

TikTok does not view this Congressional proposal as realistic. “This bill is an outright ban of TikTok, no matter how much the authors try to disguise it. This legislation will trample the First Amendment rights of 170 million Americans and deprive 5 million small businesses of a platform they rely on to grow and create jobs,” TikTok spokesperson Alex Haurek told The Hill.

Despite the company’s objections, Congress will entertain Gallagher and Krishnamoorthi’s bill. Republican and Energy and Commerce Panel Chair Cathy McMorris Rodgers released a statement on H.R. 7521, the Protecting Americans from Foreign Adversary Controlled Applications Act, saying “Foreign adversaries like China pose the greatest national security threat of our time,” and adding that she looks “forward to advancing the bill this week.” 

Avatar photo

David Adler is an entrepreneur and freelance blog post writer who enjoys writing about business, entrepreneurship, travel and the influencer marketing space.

Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

More in Platform

To Top