President Trump has signed executive orders that forbid doing business with the WeChat and TikTok owners. The first one particularly addresses TikTok. While the second talks about WeChat, its parent firm.
According to AP News , the ban has a broad scope but is highly general in nature. The possibility of this prohibition had been raised in reports for some time. We probably shouldn’t be surprised by this given how Trump has previously treated Huawei. However, it might still have significant effects on international relations and the technology industry.
In 45 days, the two executive directives come into force. They claim that they are essential because these apps pose a threat to American national security, foreign policy, and the economy.
Advertisement TRUMP BANNS WECHAT AND TIKTOK Both directives appear to have rather ambiguous language regarding what they truly imply. This indicates that some experts think they were somewhat hastily out.
However, it appears that the main goal is to seek to banish the programs from well-known app shops. Consequently, their distribution in the US is essentially stopped.
The analyst with Eurasia Group, Paul Triolo, noted the rarity of the action in an email. The orders, according to him, effectively prevent Apple and Google’s U.S. app shops from listing any mobile software after 45 days.
Advertisement Triolo thinks that there will probably be numerous legal challenges to the orders. He also mentions that Beijing will probably react sharply, if only verbally.
The Trump administration is still fighting China. This is the Trump administration’s most recent effort to slow down China’s rise as an economic superpower. Recent moves have included conducting a trade war, restricting Chinese enterprises, and preventing mergers with Chinese corporations.
Trump has also attributed the hacking of American federal databases to Chinese hackers. As a result, the Chinese government severely restricts what American tech companies may accomplish there.
Advertisement Given that it is an election year in the United States, it appears like Trump is attempting to capitalize on anti-Chinese sentiment to gain support.
Across the American political spectrum, there is concern about how TikTok is run and governed. Its susceptibility to censorship and disinformation efforts worries politicians from all sides.
However, they have not yet discovered any conclusive proof that the Chinese government has received data from American users. The threat comes mainly from the speculative possibility that Chinese corporations could be required to cooperate by the Chinese government.
Advertisement If a different corporation does not buy TikTok before this ban, Trump has already vowed to shut it down. Then, American Secretary of State Mike Pompeo proposed more sanctions against Chinese technology.
This includes preventing Chinese apps from being downloaded from American app shops, specifically mentioning TikTok and WeChat. All of the businesses involved in this have remained silent on the subject.
The U.S. administration, according to Andy Mok, a senior research fellow at the Center for China and Globalization in Beijing, views everything coming from China as suspicious. He claimed that organizations like TikTok are being targeted according to who they are rather than what they have done.
Advertisement Since there is currently no proof that TikTok poses a security danger, the prohibition itself is fairly dubious.
NO RESTRICTIONS ON AMERICAN TIKTOK USE These directives do not, as far as we can see, prohibit Americans from utilizing Tiktok. Professor of technology at the University of Notre Dame Kirsten Martin made the point that enforcing such a ban would be next to impossible.
She pointed out that it would be pointless to try to prevent Americans from using TikTok because practically every adolescent is familiar with how to use a VPN. Additionally, since so many people already own the software, it would be challenging to outlaw it.
Advertisement According to TikTok, the company does not keep American data in China. Instead, it asserts that it stores the data in Singapore and the United States. Furthermore, it declares that it would not provide the information to the Chinese government.
According to reports, TikTok has a sizable user base in the United States, making this prohibition noteworthy. In the United States, there may be up to 50 million active users.
WeChat and its sibling app are both extremely well-liked, with a combined user base of almost 1 billion. Messages and money transfers are the two main uses. The software is often used by persons of Chinese heritage to stay in touch with the mainland. China
Advertisement Users of WeChat in China are expected to abide by tight rules because the app is heavily controlled there. To support its control in China, the app also keeps track of files and photographs sent internationally.
This is undoubtedly a really audacious and significant move in escalating the Cold War in technology between China and the U.S. Trump frequently takes the offensive in these circumstances, so it will be interesting to see how this TikTok ban is received around the world.