TECHNOLOGY

The TikTok ban could hurt small businesses that prosper thanks to mobile users

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The TikTok ban could hurt small businesses that prosper thanks to mobile users

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The Bill that would Kill (sorry, Quentin Tarantino) TikTok is signed by the POTUS (President of the United States), so ByteDance, TikTok’s parent company, has only several months before it decides whether to sell or face a ban in the US.

So far, the smoke signals coming from ByteDance’s yard rule out a possible divestiture. They don’t want anybody else to get a hold of their magical algorithm that gets hundreds of millions of users hooked.

Reuters reports that a lawsuit filed by a group of TikTok creators has ignited a contentious legal battle against the bill. The law, aimed at addressing national security concerns, has left millions of users and small business owners in distress, fearing the loss of a platform that has become integral to their livelihoods.

The creators, hailing from diverse backgrounds and professions, argue that TikTok provides them with a unique avenue for self-expression and community building. Represented by Davis Wright Tremaine LLP, they contend that the law infringes upon their First Amendment rights and poses a threat to free speech by attempting to shutter a vital medium of communication.

In response, the White House has defended the law, asserting that it aligns with constitutional limitations and addresses critical national security concerns. The Justice Department has vowed to defend the legislation in court, emphasizing its importance in safeguarding sensitive data and protecting American interests.

This legal showdown is not the first time TikTok has faced regulatory challenges. Under the Trump administration, similar attempts to ban the app were met with resistance and legal action. Now, with a new administration in power, the battle rages on, with TikTok and its creators fighting to preserve their presence in the American digital landscape.

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For small business owners like Paul Tran and his wife Lynda, TikTok has been a game-changer. Their skincare brand gained widespread recognition after going viral on the platform, propelling their business to new heights.

Tran’s sentiments are echoed by many small business owners who have found success on TikTok. The platform’s algorithm-driven approach has leveled the playing field, allowing creators to reach a broader audience and drive sales. With the introduction of TikTok Shop, which enables direct sales within the app, businesses have seen unprecedented growth and opportunity.

The impact of TikTok extends beyond just business success; it has become a cultural phenomenon, shaping trends and influencing consumer behavior. For creators like Summer Lucille and Felicia Jackson, TikTok has provided a platform to showcase their products and connect with customers in ways that traditional social media platforms could not replicate.

As the legal battle unfolds, the fate of TikTok hangs in the balance. While concerns about national security are paramount, the implications of a TikTok ban extend far beyond just data protection. For millions of users and small business owners, TikTok represents not just a social media platform, but a lifeline to opportunity and community.



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