A bill to outlaw the usage of the well-known social media platform Tiktok in the nation has been introduced by senators from the United States.
Republican Senator Marco Rubio of the Senate Intelligence Committee, one of the bill’s supporters, claimed that the app was more than simply a tool for making films and that the Chinese government used it extensively to collect sensitive information from Americans.
“This is about an app that is collecting data on tens of millions of American children and adults every day,” he wrote in a statement shared on Tuesday.
He added, “We know it’s used to manipulate feeds and influence elections. We know it answers to the People’s Republic of China. There is no more time to waste on meaningless negotiations with a CCP-puppet company. It is time to ban Beijing-controlled TikTok for good.”
The proposed legislation, in general, is aimed at protecting “Americans from the threat posed by certain foreign adversaries using current or potential future social media companies that those foreign adversaries control to surveil Americans, learn sensitive data about Americans, or spread influence campaigns, propaganda, and censorship.”
However, the bill mentions TikTok and its parent company, Bytedance, as well as other subsidiaries of the company, as social media platforms of particular concern.
The new bill follows a flurry of actions already taken by Republican-led states. States like Texas, South Dakota, and Maryland, have all moved to restrict the use of Tiktok on government-owned devices.
Similarly, the US military, the State Department, and the Department of Homeland Security have all restricted the app from operating on their computer devices.
Former president Donald Trump issued an executive order to prohibit the app until it was sold to an American corporation just before the end of his administration. The order was contested in court, and the current Biden government later overturned it.