U.S. Federal Court Puts Halt On TikTok’s App Downloads

TikTok, the short video sharing app, has avoided its ban in the United States (U.S) for now. The U.S. Judge Carl Nichols said that the ban of the app won’t be in effect as scheduled on Monday. The federal court has temporarily blocked the Trump administration’s order to ban the app from Apple’s and Google’s app stores.

On Sunday Morning, TikTok attorney’s argued that the ban on the app would be “devastating” and urged the court to halt the decision. However, the government officials said that the First Amendment claims by TikTok won’t be taken into consideration as Trump administration has viewed the app as a national security risk.

In the early month of August, President Trump issued an order to ban the Chinese app TikTok and WeChat in the wake of national emergency. He gave ByteDance’s TikTok a timeline of 90 days to sell its U.S. to a foreign company. Trump’s administration order is to go into effect in November and would halt TikTok’s operation in the country. Earlier this month, the commerce department issued an order to block transactions from both the afore-mentioned apps.

On September 18th, 2020, TikTok filed a lawsuit against the Trump administration, and last week it filed an injunction to stop the ban which was supposed to go into effect from Monday. Meanwhile, the government asked the court to reject the motion. However, the U.S. court has declined the Commerce’s Department restriction “at this time.” TikTok said on Sunday that is pleased with the injunction and “will also maintain our ongoing dialogue with the government to turn our proposal, which the president gave his preliminary approval to last week, into an agreement.”

In this month, ByteDance struck a deal with Oracle and Walmart that is expected to help the TikTok to continue its operations in the U.S. It was believed that the deal would solve all the disputes between the two parties. In the deal, Oracle announced that it will be the trusted technology partner and will own a minority stake in TikTok. Moreover, President Trump said that the deal has his “blessing.” Earlier, he said that U.S. partners should have total control over TikTok’s operations in the country. However, the deal doesn’t give any control to Oracle or Walmart over the app.

On Sunday, the Judge in Pennsylvania rejected a request from three TikTok content creators to not ban the app. They said that the app helps them to “earn a livelihood” while the Judge said that the content creators have failed to prove if they suffer any immediate “irreparable harm” from the ban.

According to The Verge, both the parties are expected to meet by September 30th and continue further proceedings in the case. Currently, TikTok has more than 100 million users in the U.S. Last month, India’s government banned the app over similar concerns as the U.S. Amidst TikTok’s brimming issues with government state bodies, various similar featured apps are rolling out across the globe.

Instagram rolled a feature named “Reels” which is similar to TikTok which YouTube has also launched a feature called “YouTube Shorts” that lets the content creators post a 15-second video on the platform. Moreover, various companies have developed similar apps to gain leverage against the TikTok ban in India.