Tik Tok …Is time running out?

Currently over 100 million people in the United States are using a popular app called TikTok. The social media platform allows creators to make fifteen to sixty second videos filled with comedy, dances, cooking, sports and much more. However, with the relationship between Beiling and Washington unraveling under the Trump administration, a bidding contest amongst some of America’s top corporations has become vital to TikTok’s survival in the US.

The mission came to light in early August when Trump signed an executive order that would take TikTok off American devices and the US app store unless ByteDance, the Chinese Corporation that owns TikTok, finds an American owner for its US operations by September 20. Trump wants to ban TikTok because of growing apprehension that the app could be used as a weapon to spy on Americans by Beijing. The Trump administration also expressed unease that the Chinese government could potentially use personal data collected by the app as leverage in the future.

TikTok has denied both allegations. TikTok has stated that the data center, at which US personal data is stored, is not in China and therefore none of the data could be subject to Chinese law.

With Trump’s position as kingmaker of any TikTok deal, Microsoft, Oracle and Walmart began the bid. On September 13, it was announced that Microsoft was no longer in the bid; ByteDance had rejected their offer. Oracle has partnered with ByteDance but it has not been determined if this will be beneficial in keeping TikTok in America. Walmart may still have a small part with ByteDance. Before any deal can be reached, it has to please government officials and they have made it clear that they have every intention of reviewing all aspects of the partnership.

Although the path of TikTok is not straight or paved, Generation Z, the main users of the app, are concerned they could lose access to their favorite app.