US tech companies want Trump government to take action against Chinese app TikTok. TikTok, a video-sharing social networking service owned by ByteDance, a Beijing-based internet technology company and 58 other applications were recently banned in India. Chinese apps have come under severe scrutiny from the Silicon Valley giants for engaging in “activities which are prejudicial to sovereignty and integrity, defence, security of state and public order” in India.
Venkatesh Shukla, the former president of TiE Silicon Valley, said TikTok is fast becoming one of the most influential social media platforms, joining the likes of Twitter, Facebook and Instagram in terms of audience size, demographic engagement and advertising dollars.
“Given this competition for advertising dollars, Silicon Valley does not feel sorry for TikTok,” said Shukla, the Indian-American venture capitalist. TiE is a non-profit organisation for entrepreneurial networking.
The ban on TikTok came against the backdrop of the current stand-off between Indian and Chinese troops along the Line of Actual control in eastern Ladakh.
“In fact, the sentiment here seems to be that the US should follow suit and ban it (TikTok) in the US as well. After all, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram are not allowed to operate in China, so why should TikTok be allowed here?” Shukla added.
Another public figure, Cuban-American music video director and producer Robby Starbuck said, “Almost 1/3 of all TikTok downloads are from India. This is a big deal. The US should do the same thing India has done today. Ban all apps controlled by China. They’re a national security risk that we can’t afford to take,” Starbuck tweeted.
Former US Ambassador to the UN, Nikki Haley also tweeted, “Good to see India banning 59 popular apps owned by Chinese firms, including TikTok, which counts India as one of its largest markets. India is continuing to show it won’t back down from China’s aggression.”
Meanwhile, Fobes wrote, “There was a storm of publicity last week, when TikTok was found by Apple AAPL to be secretly accessing users’ clipboards. TikTok claims that this was an inadvertent technical bug caused by an anti-spam filter, but the backlash was fast and furious.”
India on Monday banned 59 Chinese apps, including the hugely popular TikTok. The ban comes as India tries to increase economic pressure on China following a violent face-off last month in Galwan Valley and Gogra-Hot Springs areas of eastern Ladakh.