"The best way to predict your future is to create it." Abraham Lincoln

Lincoln High School Statesman

"The best way to predict your future is to create it." Abraham Lincoln

Lincoln High School Statesman

"The best way to predict your future is to create it." Abraham Lincoln

Lincoln High School Statesman

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Is TikTok getting banned?

LHS+students+are+frequently+seen+using+TikTok+in+the+halls+and+classrooms.+
Leah Mannes
LHS students are frequently seen using TikTok in the halls and classrooms.

In the U.S. alone, TikTok has over 50 million daily active users. With its vast popularity, TikTok influences trends, fashion and even business. However, U.S. lawmakers are currently trying to ban the app despite its impact on society. 

TikTok’s parent company is ByteDance, a Chinese company, and fear of China gathering U.S. information has been increasing due to recent events such as the Chinese balloon flying over the country in 2023. Therefore, U.S. officials believe that ByteDance could divulge the personal information of 170 million American users to the Chinese government. Even if ByteDance does not intend to do this, U.S. officials predict the Chinese government could easily force them to. To prevent this potential national security threat, legislators proposed a bill to eventually ban the app. 

The bill gives ByteDance 165 days to divest or sell TikTok to an American company. If they do not, the app will be banned from app stores in the U.S. entirely. Many lawmakers and TikTok users alike think that it would be in ByteDance’s best interest to comply since the majority of TikTok users are Americans, but it may be challenging to sell the app. Big tech companies in the U.S. such as Google and Microsoft may not be allowed to buy the app due to antitrust laws that prevent large corporations from gaining too much power. 

On Mar. 13, 2024, the U.S. House of Representatives passed the bill with an overwhelming majority from both parties. Now, the bill will be sent to the Senate to be debated, discussed and voted on. The debates could greatly slow the bill’s path to the President’s desk, but President Biden claims that he will sign the bill if it gets there.

Is this a good thing or a bad thing? The public and even TikTok users seem to be divided on the issue. Those against the ban believe that the government would be taking away the constitutional right of freedom of expression. Additionally, if it was banned, TikTok influencers would lose their jobs, and businesses would lose a platform used for advertisement. 

However, many see the possible positive outcomes of TikTok becoming banned. Some users admit that if the app was banned, their screen time would decrease and they would waste less time on their phones. For example, Katie Richie, a TikTok creator with 1.9 million followers, made a lighthearted video professing that she would not be totally against the app getting banned despite it being her job. 

“Hear me out. I don’t think that a TikTok ban would be the worst thing. I feel like we all might go outside a little more,” said Richie. 

Although the ban could have a positive outcome overall, it would significantly change the daily lives of Americans, especially teenagers. The countless hours spent scrolling and watching the short clips would all come to an end, but TikTok users should not worry yet. Even if the bill gets passed, TikTok could still be sold to an American company and users could continue enjoying the app.

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About the Contributor
Leah Mannes
Leah Mannes, Staff Writer
Leah Mannes is a junior and a first-year staff writer for the Statesman. She is a part of the LHS soccer and basketball teams and participates in SNHS and MNHS. Mannes can often be found blasting Zach Bryan in her car, rewatching “The Notebook” or using her digital camera to capture moments with her friends. If she seems lost in her own world, it is probably because she is daydreaming about moving to the mountains.
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