September 15 is almost here, and that is the deadline for ByteDance, the parent company of TikTok to sell its United States division to an American born company. Chinese officials have made it clear that they are not interested in doing so and would rather shut down the app than hand it over.
The US government decided to ban TikTok on September 15, owing to the unproven security concerns raised by the country. In the recent past, Microsoft and Oracle came forward to express their interest in buying TikTok from the parent company but the offer got rejected. This transaction would help keep TikTok alive in the US as both companies hail from America.
According to the report from Reuters, selling the app would make China appear weak. A few anonymous sources, also report that the Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian said that the US was abusing the concept of national security to oppress foreign companies.
Many US officials have raised the privacy concerns that the app might be sharing data with Beijing in spite of the makers promising that they would never do so. A list of properties and technologies that TikTok uses was revised by the Chinese government, each item of which would need to be approved before being “exported” to the US company. This includes TikTok’s strong recommendation algorithm. China is prepared to enforce this list in order to “delay any deal reached by ByteDance if it had to,” according to the source.
It all started when India banned TikTok among other apps, owing to privacy and security concerns a few months back. Since then, there were rumors that the United States would follow suit which they sure did. Following the backlash, the TikTok CEO had resigned. Grabbing the opportunity, Instagram launched an alternative called Instagram Reels which still remains under the radar.