“TikTok ban bill” fact or fake?

Concerns regarding the “TikTok ban bill” spew chaos and misbelief


TikTok CEO Shou Zi Chew speaking at the Bloomberg New Economy Forum on 11/16/22

Laiken Swinney, Reporter

Everyone is on TikTok – children, teens, adults, and even grandparents. It’s one of the many social media platforms that brings us joy and immediate gratification, but also is a source for world wide news and information that would not be normally covered on your local 6AM station.

From the first look at bombings on the Ukrainian border, to protests in Iran over women’s rights and the use of the hijab. TikTok, though it may not seem like it, is one of the biggest and most actively used platforms for journalistic expression and internet freedom. The United States government, mainly Congress, seems to think differently, though. 

On March 7, 2023, the US Senate introduced a proposed legislation titled ‘The Restrict Act’; the basic premise of it was that it is supposed to “limit national security risks by addressing technology-based threats to the safety of Americans,” According to the 118th Congress (2023-2024) RESTRICT Act. In other words, the government is trying to protect us from foreign attacks made through the internet.

The reason this bill has been deemed the “TikTok ban bill” is because if the bill is passed, then it would ban access to the app, and many professionals and legislative bodies agree that banning it would protect the American population from the Chinese Communist Party. 

Officials believe that since TikTok’s main headquarters are in China, “Americans are more at risk for our data being stolen and being used to spy on us,” According to a statement from the White House National Security Advisor.

Although these may be good points, the problem with banning TikTok is the amount of vital information that would be lost, and the fear of being cut off from the rest of the world. Internet freedom and expression is key to avoiding living in a totalitarian state.

“The problem with banning TikTok is the amount of vital information that would be lost, and the fear of being cut off from the rest of the world.

Officials also believe that TikTok is not a safe place for children and promotes violent ideologies and should be banned because of those reasons. 

All in all, though, banning TikTok simply wouldn’t be ideal. Not having internet freedom and expression is detrimental and against all the laws and liberties we stand for, not to mention that many people have grown their businesses and lifestyles off of TikTok. If it’s their only source of income then it could seriously affect their lifestyle and possibly ruin relationships with people. It won’t be that deep though.

Many people have a lot of misconceptions about the bill, the most popular one is that it will even get banned in the first place. Too many US citizens rely and depend on the app, not to mention the permanent deletion of the app would be bad for the US economy and possibly create tension between other countries, etc. 

The other common misconception, as said by lawmakers themselves, is that TikTok is tapping into our phone cameras and WiFi and single-handedly trying to track us for whatever reason. That is simply not true, the CEO of TikTok, Shou Zi Chew, proved that the app does use WiFi to have the app be able to function and work in the first place. The tracking is just a plain lie.

TikTok’s audience mainly consists of teens and young-adults, around 17% globally according to TikTok by the Numbers (2023), and without them having access to the app, then there would be no success with growing the app and giving the younger generation a place to chat, learn, and grow. There is a very low chance that TikTok will actually get banned, according to the 118th Congress (2023-2024) but people should know the facts before getting too worked up about it being wiped off the face of the planet.