Tick tock won another battle in the battle against the Trump administration's ban on video sharing app in the US – or more precisely, the TikTok community won one battle. On Friday, a federal judge in Pennsylvania issued a restraining order blocking restrictions that would otherwise have prevented TikTok from operating in the United States on November 12.
This particular lawsuit was not brought by TikTok itself, but by a group of TikTok developers who use the app to connect with their over a million followers.
According to court documents, plaintiff Douglas Marland has 2.7 million followers on the app; Alec Chambers has 1.8 million followers; and Cosette Rinab has 2.3 million followers. The creators successfully argued – as it turned out – that in the event of a ban they would lose access to their followers and the "professional opportunities that TikTok offers". In other words, they would lose their brand sponsorships – that is, their income.
This isn't the first time U.S. courts have sided with TikTok to block the Trump administration's proposed ban on the Chinese video-sharing app. Last month, a DC judge blocked the ban on the app no longer being listed in the US app stores operated by Apple and Google.
That decision, however, didn't stop the November 12 ban that would have prevented the company from providing internet hosting services that would have allowed TikTok to continue operating in the United States.
Due to the Chinese parent company ByteDance, the Trump administration decided to block the operation of the TikTok app in the USA. claim it is a national security threat. The main argument of the judge in this judgment was that "the descriptions of the national security threat from the TikTok app described by the government are formulated in the hypothesis".
This hypothetical risk cannot be classified by the government as such a risk that it outweighs the public interest. In this case, TikTok's more than 100 million users and developers such as Marland, Chambers, and Rinab were keen to distribute "informational materials" that enabled the judge to rule that the ban would close a platform to TikTok's expressive activity.
"We are deeply moved by the support of our creators who have worked to protect their freedom of expression and careers and to help small businesses, especially during the pandemic," said Vanessa Pappas. TikTok's interim global head, in a statement. "We stand behind our community when they share their voices, and we are determined to continue providing a home for them," she added.
The TikTok community, coming to the rescue in this one aspect of the whole TikTok image, gets this whole story to the point. Although the company was relatively calm throughout the process, Pappas thanked the community several times for their support. While there have been some initial waves of "sadness" in the app where the developers are desperately recommending people to follow them on other platforms, over time this has turned into more of an atmosphere where we band together. This activity merged with a large increase in the advocacy of voting on the platform, where many creators are too young to actually participate but consider voting messages as their way of participating.
TikTok has remained active in the product department throughout the chaos, mailing election guides and attempting to ban the QAnon conspiracy from spreading even after Pakistan banned the app and then banned it again.