TikTok Will Close U.S. Operations If Law Does Not Change

TikTok has fired back at the U.S. ban law. Bytedance, the parent company that owns TikTok, announced they would rather shut down U.S. TikTok operations than sell. President Biden signed a law earlier in the week that gave nine months to Bytedance to find a buyer. If it does not, it will face a ban from the U.S. market.

The nine-month deadline can be extended to three months if Bytedance can prove a sale is underway. They will have until January 19, 2025, to sell the app. TikTok’s CEO, Shou Zi Chew, vowed to fight the “unconstitutional” law in the courts:

“Make no mistake, this is a ban on TikTok and a ban on you and your voice. This ban would devastate seven million businesses and silence 170 million Americans”

– Shou Zi Chew, TikTok’s CEO

Reuters reported that the short-form video app’s U.S. business “accounts for a small share of ByteDance’s total revenues and daily active users.” They added that closing it down in the United States “would have limited impact” on the company’s global business. Furthermore it “would not have to give up its core algorithm” to a U.S. company.

TikTok’s algorithm is its most powerful feature. They have expertly crafted an algorithm that fits each user almost perfectly on their For You Page. It has certainly gotten many people “addicted” to the app, scrolling for hours into the night.

Some have expressed concerns that China’s Government could use the app to manipulate public opinion, including during elections. Lawmakers are also concerned that Beijing can access the app’s U.S. users’ data.