Disrupting ‘our family and social structures’: Nepal joins neighbors, bans China’s TikTok

by WorldTribune Staff, November 14, 2023

The Nepalese government announced on Monday it has decided to ban TikTok because the platform was disrupting the South Asian’ country’s “social harmony.”

“Considering how TikTok is disrupting our social harmony, and the impact it’s having on our family and social structures, the cabinet has decided to ban TikTok for the moment,” Rekha Sharma, Nepal’s minister of communication and information technology, told reporters.

Specifically, Nepal’s officials said they were apprehensive about TikTok content that is “stoking religious hate, violence, and sexual abuse.”

Pakistan and India have also banned TikTok over similar concerns, including a charge from Pakistan of “immoral and indecent” content.

Users of the platform in Nepal over the last four years reported 1,600 TikTok-related cyber crimes to the country’s authorities.

Purushottam Khanal, head of Nepal’s Telecommunications Authority, has instructed Internet service providers in the Himalayan country of 30 million to cut access to the app.

In May, Montana became the first state in the U.S. to ban TikTok over concerns about Beijing’s access to the platform’s user information.

Canada and the UK have imposed restrictions on TikTok to different degrees, mostly barring government officials from using the algorithm-driven short video app.

TikTok, which has over one billion active users worldwide, has long maintained that it doesn’t share data with the Chinese government.

But TikTok is owned by ByteDance, which is based in China. While ByteDance may not be a direct arm of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), Chinese laws say it can be forced to assist the communist government. That could mean handing all the data the TikTok app has collected about American citizens to the CCP. And TikTok collects a lot of data about its users.

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