TikTok creators and three Democratic Party lawmakers in the United States said on Wednesday they opposed any potential ban on the Chinese-owned short video sharing app, which is used by over 150 million Americans.
TikTok CEO Shou Zi Chew will testify before the United States House Energy and Commerce Committee on Thursday, amid growing calls for a ban based on national security concerns at a time when relations between Beijing and Washington have deteriorated.
Representatives Jamaal Bowman, Mark Pocan, and Robert Garcia, as well as TikTok creators, called for broad-brd privacy legislation that would address all large social media companies at a press conference in Washington.
“Why the hysteria and the panic and the targeting of TikTok?” Bowman asked.
“Let’s do the right thing here – comprehensive social media reform as it relates to privacy and security.”
Nonetheless, far more US lawmakers want TikTok to be banned. Critics are concerned that TikTok user data in the United States will be passed on to the Chinese government.
TikTok said last week that President Joe Biden’s administration demanded that its Chinese owners divest their stakes or face a potential ban.
On Wednesday, creators discussed posting videos of baking cakes or selling greeting cards to TikTok followers. Some people held signs saying TikTok helps small businesses. According to TikTok, 5 million businesses use the app.
On the Senate floor on Wednesday, Democrat Senator Ed Markey stated that TikTok is a threat that must be addressed, but it is not the only surveillance threat to young people. This position “is deliberately missing the Big Tech forest for the TikTok trees.”
Democratic Senator Mark Warner announced that two more senators have joined him in supporting his bipartisan legislation with Republican John Thune to give the Biden administration new powers to ban TikTok.