TikTok CEO Shou Chew fires back at U.S. Congress over forced sale bill

  • , by Balikbayan Store
  • 1 min reading time

TikTok's CEO, Shou Zi Chew, expressed confidence on Wednesday in the company's ability to overcome legal challenges to block legislation aimed at banning the popular short video app in the United States. The legislation, signed into law by President Joe Biden, requires China-based ByteDance, TikTok's parent company, to divest its U.S. assets within 270 days or face a ban.

In a video posted shortly after Biden signed the bill, Chew assured TikTok's users, saying, "Rest assured - we aren't going anywhere." He added, "The facts and the Constitution are on our side, and we expect to prevail again."

Biden's signing sets a deadline of January 19 for the sale, with the possibility of a three-month extension if progress is being made. White House spokeswoman Karine Jean-Pierre emphasized concerns about Chinese ownership, stating, "We don't want to see a ban."

The legislation marks a continuation of the long-standing battle between the U.S. government and TikTok over national security concerns. Former President Donald Trump's attempts to ban the app were thwarted by the courts in 2020. However, the current bill, driven by fears of Chinese surveillance, garnered bipartisan support in Congress.

Chew reiterated TikTok's commitment to challenge the restrictions, emphasizing, "Make no mistake - this is a ban on TikTok." The company plans to contest the legislation on First Amendment grounds, a move supported by the American Civil Liberties Union.

Despite concerns about the fate of TikTok's U.S. employees and potential repercussions for other foreign-owned apps, the Biden administration sees the legislation as a means to strengthen its legal authority in national security matters.

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