American tech firms can’t just operate in China. Why should TikTok be able to freely operate in the US?
There isn’t an actual reason, just some delusional conviction that if we open up our markets to their exports while they close theirs to our imports, we’ll win some sort of moral victory through the ineffable operations of the marketplace.
Or we could just act like rational adults instead of this libertarian cargo cult stuff.
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said late on Monday that the United States is “certainly looking at” banning Chinese social media apps, including TikTok.
“I don’t want to get out in front of the President (Donald Trump), but it’s something we’re looking at,” Pompeo said in an interview with Fox News.
U.S. lawmakers have raised national security concerns over TikTok’s handling of user data, saying they were worried about Chinese laws requiring domestic companies “to support and cooperate with intelligence work controlled by the Chinese Communist Party.”
Part of this is no doubt the escalating obnoxiousness by some TikTok users and growing concerns about an app with terrible privacy policies that appears to be squarely aimed at minors. Tiktok, like Snapchat, is likely to be a flash in the pan, but these battles will only escalate as Tencent makes a tougher push to enter the American marketplace, and as Huawei continues its global battle.