The social platform is firing back against the President.
Earlier in the month, United States President Donald Trump enacted an executive order to formally ban the Chinese social media video platform TikTok from operating in the country, citing concerns about data privacy. Several American tech companies, with the most notable inclusion being Microsoft, are currently in talks to purchase the rights to TikTok’s US operations from its parent company, ByteDance, and turn it into a fully American business. However, it seems TikTok is no longer satisfied with a quiet change-over.
In a company blog post today, TikTok announced that they would be pursuing legal action against President Trump and his administration on the grounds that banning the app from the US entirely violates the company’s Fifth Amendment rights. As the Fifth Amendment reads, no one in the US can be “deprived of life, liberty or property without due process of law.” TikTok has been making efforts to prove the security of its operations and assuage rumors that it supplies data to the Chinese government, but these efforts have been disregarded by President Trump.
“We do not take suing the government lightly, however we feel we have no choice but to take action to protect our rights, and the rights of our community and employees,” TikTok said in their post. “With the Executive Order threatening to bring a ban on our US operations — eliminating the creation of 10,000 American jobs and irreparably harming the millions of Americans who turn to this app for entertainment, connection and legitimate livelihoods that are vital especially during the pandemic — we simply have no choice.”
“We will continue the work we have long been undertaking to earn the trust of our full US community,” the post continued. “For example, our Transparency and Accountability Center is central among those ongoing efforts as an industry-leading step to build trust and understanding of our moderation policies, source code, and data practices. Our legal challenge is a protection to ensure that these efforts can take place without the threat of an unwarranted ban hovering like a dark cloud over the joy and creativity of our community.
Neither the White House or the Justice Department have commented on the lawsuit.