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“Ban TikTok: GOP Reacts After Bin Laden Letter Sparks Online Frenzy

As tensions between the U.S. and China continue to rise, GOP lawmakers have renewed their calls to ban the popular video-sharing app TikTok. The app has been under fire due to its ties to Chinese tech giant ByteDance, raising fears of potential censorship and data-collection. The renewed calls come after an odd letter written by Osama bin Laden “to America” went trending on TikTok. This prompted many to criticise the app for not doing enough to filter out messages promoting terrorism and violence. TikTok has firmly denied allegations of censorship and data-collection, stating that security is a priority for the platform. Despite this, it has been the target of intense criticism from both US President Donald Trump and the former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. President Trump has threatened to ban the app in the US but the move has been put on hold pending a potential sale of the platform’s US assets. This has been further complicated by judicial orders issued by the US Department of Justice demanding an official review of the app due to safety concerns. In light of these developments, GOP lawmakers have once again come out in support of a ban on TikTok and have urged the Trump administration to act quickly in this regard. The debate surrounding the app continues to heat up as lawmakers and social media users worry about the potential implications of allowing its continued use in the U.S. While the app has become popular among teens and young adults, serious concerns remain about its potential to meddle with US politics and security. Whether or not a ban will actually be enacted remains to be seen. In the meantime, the increased scrutiny over TikTok has led many users to look for alternatives and some of the competing video-sharing apps have seen a surge in downloads.