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Will the rest of the country follow Montana?
That’s what lawmakers are wondering as Montana state representatives passed a new bill that would ban anyone from accessing TikTok while located within the state.
The move comes after the Chinese-owned social media app has come under increased scrutiny regarding its collection of American’s data.
MANY STATES ALREADY BANNED TIKTOK ON GOVT DEVICES
More than half of America’s fifty states have already enacted a TikTok ban on state and government-owned devices. Montana would be the first to ban it for everyone. The House voted 54-43 to pass the bill which is now heading to Republican Governor Greg Gianforte for approval.
TikTok is owned by ByteDance, which is a Chinese tech company. The app has come under considerable pressure after reports allege that they have been gathering social media users data, photos and even keystrokes. Under Chinese law, any company must oblige and hand over information if they are asked.
The app’s developers say that the United States’ claims are fabricated and without merit.
If the new law passes, it will be interesting to see what’s next. Will other states follow with their own individual bans, or will the federal government get involved? And if so, will it even be Constitutional for the government to block people from downloading certain social media apps?
One bill that is gaining traction within Congress is the “RESTRICT Act,” which not only bans TikTok, but also gives a ton of power to the elected Commerce Department that goes well beyond what they are telling the American people.
State authorities will be able to use IP addresses and geo-location to determine when a person is within the state’s limits in order to restrict access to TikTok.
Regardless what happens, it’s just one more thing that adds to the already heated tension between the United States and China.