Gianna Cognetti, Features Editor
On Sept. 20 the popular app TikTok was banned from gaining new users. Further restrictions will be in place sometime in November and some question if President Donald Trump is infringing on the First Amendment.
The app is currently unavailable to download, however, those who already downloaded the app before the ban can still use it as normal. Yet, they will not receive updates, eventually causing the app to become non-functioning.
According to “TikTok Revenue and Usage Statistics” by Mansoor Iqbal, there are currently 500 million active users around the world and there were 738 million downloads in 2019. Currently, the average U.S. consumer to spend 45 minutes of their day on TikTok.
TikTok was the second most downloaded app last year, which was only behind WhatsApp, and surpassed popular social media platforms such as Twitter, SnapChat and Instagram. The app is available in 75 different languages as well, allowing it to reach a variety of demographics.
According to CNN, Trump is allowing TikTok to continue as long as it is run in the United States by companies Oracle and Walmart. According to Trump’s reasoning, he wants to ensure safety and reduce the risk of possibly being spied on by China.
UC student and TikTok user Patrick Holt enjoys the app for what it is and thinks paranoia stems from the administration when the baseline functions of the app are just to watch short clips.
“I have it because I run all of the social media for my YouTube channel,” he said. “TikTok is where a majority of our new viewers come from. It’s the most important platform we have.”
Holt thinks Trump should focus more on significant issues.
Junior Joe Greene also enjoys using the app, explaining that much like any other social media platforms, it is a good way to pass time and is entertaining.
“The ban is interesting,” he said. “I have not looked into why it is banned too much, but I know other companies are buying the platform to prevent the ban.”
As a business major, Justin Garret believes the app should not be banned. Garret downloaded TikTok during the beginning of quarantine out of boredom and has been using it ever since.
“I feel like TikTok has a good flow as a business,” he said. “The app is performing so well.”