President Donald Trump has announced that he will sign a decree banning TikTok in the United States today. By thus increasing pressure on the Chinese company ByteDance, which owns TikTok, the United States hopes to force it to sell the popular application.
Trump will ban TikTok
It is unclear exactly how the ban of TikTok is planned, but the source describes the ban as the culmination of US concerns about the security of personal data in TikTok, and a major blow to ByteDance, which has become one of the few truly global Chinese conglomerates thanks to its application.
Trump’s announcement follows tumultuous talks yesterday between the White House, ByteDance and potential TikTok buyers, including Microsoft. The parties were unable to conclude a deal, but negotiations should continue in the coming days.
Microsoft is a potential buyer. Because it will face fewer regulatory hurdles in acquiring TikTok than more direct competitors such as FaceBook.
According to informants, ByteDance values TikTok at more than $50 billion and insists on retaining a certain share of the enterprise.
Under US pressure, ByteDance is considering several options for relinquishing control of the app, which allows users to create short videos with special effects, and has become incredibly popular among American teens. There are 80 million active monthly TikTok users in the US.
The U.S. wants TikTok (Chinese) to become an American company
The clampdown on Chinese companies by the United States is far from over. This certainly will not stop with Huawei. It appears that the U.S. now sees any “big company” from China as a potential threat. Recent reports show that the U.S. has commenced a comprehensive containment of Chinese technology companies. The U.S. will not only ban hardware companies like Huawei, it will also prohibit Chinese software companies. The latest software company to feel the hammer of the U.S. will probably be TikTok.
The White House economic adviser, Larry Kudlow, said that he expects TikTok to be stripped from its Chinese parent company ByteDance. For the U.S, it has concerns about the security of data processing on the short video platform. TikTok has to come out of Bytedance and operate as an independent American company. A top White House official believes that this is better than banning.
This is funny because it appears that the U.S. is trying to coerce TikTok into becoming an American company. If TikTok eventually becomes an American company, its servers will be in the U.S. and not in China.