Twitter has reportedly joined the race for TikTok’s juicy assets, while its Chinese owner seeks to sue the Trump administration, claiming that the move to force it out of the US market is based purely on anti-China scaremongering.
Presented as a vital move to protect Americans and their data from pesky Chinese spies, US President Donald Trump’s executive order earlier this week set a 45-day deadline for ByteDance to ‘divest’ its US operations.
Beijing argues that all the “national security” concerns are just a pretext for a hostile takeover to solidify Washington’s dominance online. Challenging the move, TikTok is set to file a federal lawsuit in the US District Court for the Southern District of California as early as Tuesday, a company source told NPR, arguing that Trump’s executive action is “unconstitutional.”
“It’s based on pure speculation and conjecture… The order has no findings of fact, just reiterates rhetoric about China that has been kicking around.”
Meanwhile, Twitter has become the second American tech behemoth to express interest in obtaining TikTok’s assets, according to sources cited by Reuters. It is unclear, though, if the social media giant will be able to outbid Microsoft, which is rumored to be the prime contender in the takeover.
TikTok is an insanely popular video-sharing app, especially among young people. It has around 80 million monthly active users in the United States, 80 percent of them below the age of 34. Its parent company ByteDance has more than 1,000 employees across the US, while its American assets and operations are estimated at $30 to 40 billion.
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