U.S. House Committee Passes Bill That Would Ban TikTok in the U.S

Technology Author: EqualOcean News, Jiahui Liao Editor: Yiru Qian Apr 18, 2024 11:54 PM (GMT+8)

The Speaker of the US House of Representatives plans to include the TikTok-related bill in a comprehensive foreign aid package for a vote, with the Senate expected to swiftly follow suit.


On April 17th local time, Mike Johnson, the Speaker of the US House of Representatives, intends to incorporate the already-passed TikTok "sell or be banned" bill into a rapidly advancing aid package for Ukraine and Israel. US President Biden has previously stated that if the US Congress ultimately passes the bill, he will promptly sign it into law.

Reports suggest that the new bill in the House of Representatives will grant ByteDance up to a year to divest TikTok, which is longer than the previously stipulated six months. The House is expected to pass these bills on April 20th, after which the Senate is likely to promptly take up the review. Previously, the Senate also discussed extending the deadline to a year, considering postponing the ban until after the presidential election.

On April 18th, TikTok responded to the latest developments, stating that the US House of Representatives is once again forcefully advancing a ban bill under the guise of a humanitarian aid bill, which will trample on the freedom of speech of 170 million Americans, destroy 7 million businesses, and shut down a platform that contributes USD 24 billion annually to the US economy.

If the bill is indeed signed into law, it will significantly impact the short video application used by as many as 170 million Americans, marking a critical setback for TikTok's tense lobbying efforts, especially after its CEO, Zhang Yiming, encountered significant setbacks during his lobbying efforts on Capitol Hill last month.

Previously, China has made it clear that TikTok is fully registered in the United States, operates legally and compliantly, and accepts US regulation. Despite this, the US is sparing no effort to use national power to suppress it, not only seeking to implement a ban but also to force divestment. A country that advocates freedom of speech and prides itself on being a free-market economy is using national power to suppress specific enterprises, which is truly ironic.