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What happens next with TikTok?| GuyWhoKnowsThings

What will happen next with TikTok?

The social media video app isn't going away from smartphones anytime soon. The legislative process is still in its early stages after the The approval of a bill by the House demand a sale by the app's Chinese owner, ByteDance, or be banned. The bill will next head to a skeptical Senate, after which President Biden would have to sign it into law. Even after that, it may not happen.

This is what you can expect.

The bill must be approved by the Senate, which could also make changes to the text of the legislation.

Several senators have already expressed concerns about the legislation as it is currently written. For example, because the bill's text explicitly mentions TikTok and ByteDance, some worry it could violate a part of the Constitution that prohibits Congress from targeting specific entities with legislation. (Supporters of the bill say this won't be a problem.)

Several prominent senators who could help decide whether the legislation moves forward have not committed. Senator Chuck Schumer of New York, the Democratic leader, has not said whether he will bring it to a vote. His spokeswoman did not respond to a question about his plans.

Sen. Maria Cantwell of Washington, a Democrat and chairwoman of the Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee, said in a statement that she would speak with “colleagues in the Senate and House to try to find a path forward that is constitutional and protects civil liberties.” ”. .”

President Biden said last week that he would sign the bill if Congress passed it. But even if he did so, it wouldn't result in an immediate ban.

ByteDance will have six months to find someone to buy the app. If ByteDance finds a buyer that satisfies the government within that time period, the ban will never go into effect. Otherwise, app stores and internet hosting companies will no longer be able to offer TikTok for download or send updates to the app.

A ban becomes more likely if TikTok cannot find a buyer who can pay a price that is likely to be in the tens of billions of dollars, analysts say. That's probably going to be difficult..

A sale or divestiture could also depend on whether ByteDance is willing to sell or spin off TikTok's entire global footprint or just its U.S. operations. The legislation prohibits connections between the two. companies after a sale, leading to complications if an American TikTok needed access to the parent company's algorithms or other global versions of the app.

A ban could also result from the Chinese government blocking the sale of TikTok. China has criticized the new legislation and Beijing appeared to take steps in 2020 that would give it the ability to block the transfer of TikTok's algorithm.

If the House bill becomes law, TikTok or someone else will likely challenge its legality in court. A possible ban could be delayed while they fight that legal battle with the government. And ultimately, a judge could throw out the legislation entirely.

The bill passed in the House on Wednesday does not appear to include any way for the government to remove the TikTok app from your phone. The bill's sponsors did not immediately respond to a question about what would happen to versions of the app already installed on smartphones.

But preventing app stores and hosting services from sending app updates or assisting in its maintenance could degrade the service for existing users even if TikTok is already installed, and the app could stop working entirely.

TikTok is required by law to allow you to download its videos and other content.

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