TikTok leaves Hong Kong
TikTok App Leaves Hong Kong Market Following Many Other Major Technology Projects Amid High-profile China National Security Bill Comes Into Force.
«In light of recent events, we have decided to discontinue the TikTok app in Hong Kong», – confirmed to CNN Business by a social media spokesperson.
It’s unclear exactly when TikTok, owned by Beijing-based startup ByteDance., will leave the media space of the Asian financial center.
Facebook, Twitter and Google Says It Will Suspend Sharing Users’ Personal Data With Hong Kong Authorities While New Law Is Evaluated.
Introduced last week by Beijing the law criminalizes territorial division, terrorism and collusion with foreign powers. This marks a radical change that critics call attacks on freedom of speech and press that exist in Hong Kong but are banned in mainland China.
Vaguely worded rules expand the powers of officials to prosecute and punish both foreign and local citizens for a range of offenses. For example, such as «incitement to hatred» among Hong Kong residents in relation to the mainland.
New investigative powers also allow police to require media platforms and ISPs to remove information that threatens national security..
If the publisher refuses to cooperate, the police are in the right «take any measures to remove information», said in a government statement.
This law represents a significant change in the status of Hong Kong. Ever since the UK officially handed the territory back to China in 1997, the city has existed under special rules that differ from the mainland. for instance, the internet was uncensored and residents had free access to social media platforms such as Facebook, Whatsapp and Google.
TikTok is also not available on the mainland, where ByteDance instead offers a Chinese version of an app called Douyin.. It is not yet clear if Douyin will be available to users in Hong Kong..
It’s worth noting that TikTok has been trying to distance itself from China and ByteDance for some time now..
In May, the app hired a top manager Disney Kevin Mayer for wide expansion into the American market. Monday night, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said the US is considering banning TikTok and other Chinese social networks.
«If you want your personal information in the hands of the Chinese Communist Party – just download TikTok», – he said in an interview with Fox News.
«We have never provided user data to the Chinese government, and we will not do so even if asked to.», – commented on the words of Pompeo the press service of the application.
The company previously said that all of its data centers are located outside of China and are not subject to Chinese law..
The app has been very popular in the US and other Western countries since its launch in 2016. TikTok was downloaded 315 million times in the first three months of this year alone, breaking a record for mobile apps.
However, the social network recently ran into a hurdle in one of its most important markets..
India last week banned TikTok and other Chinese apps, claiming they were «a threat to sovereignty and integrity». The ban follows a wider escalation of tensions between the two countries following a military clash at the border of the two countries in June this year..
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