TikTok Will Not Be Banned In Australia Confirmed Bill Shorten, So Continue Ur Doomscrolling

As the United States government looks more and more like it will be banning TikTok in the US, concerns have been raised about whether Australia will follow suit and ban the app here. Now thanks to an announcement from Minister of Government Services Bill Shorten, Aussie TikTokers can be assured that there are no plans yet to stop their doomscrolling.

This week the US Congress made the provocative decision to force the Chinese-based company that owns TikTok to sell to American companies, or else the app would be banned in the country. This vote was highly favourable amongst Congress, and highly unfavourable to the Chinese government, who said that a ban would be “bullying”.

Why are countries trying to ban TikTok?

The fear from government officials across the US, Australia, and other Western nations, is that the company that owns TikTok, ByteDance, is based in Beijing and may have allegiances to the Chinese government.

Due to this, concerns have been raised for years now about the potential of user data being accessed by the Chinese government, which poses a threat to national security.

While it’s all highly controversial, there have been some hilarious moments in the US Congress, including how many times TikTok’s CEO Shou Zi Chew had to confirm he was actually from Singapore, not China.

@vicenews Republican Senator Tom Cotton repeatedly probed TikTok CEO Shou Zi Chew, who is Singaporean, about being Chinese and part of the “Chinese Communist Party.” #tiktok #shouzichew #singapore #usa #republican #senator #tomcotton #asian #singaporetiktok #american #politics ♬ original sound – VICE News

TikTok has been banned in India ever since 2020, and has been banned on the phones of government officials in Australia since April of 2023.

And unless ByteDance divests its assets to the US within six months, the app will be banned in America too.

Will TikTok be banned in Australia?

On March 16 when appearing on the Today breakfast program, Bill Shorten stated that there was no plan for the video app to be banned in Australia.

“The government has said that we’re not going to ban the app. We will rely on the advice of our security agencies,” Shorten said.

Additionally, Prime Minister Anthony Albanese made a similar statement on the future of TikTok in Australia earlier in the week.

“I think you’ve got to be pretty cautious. You’ve always got to have national security concerns front and centre, but you also need to acknowledge that for a whole lot of people, this provides a way of them communicating,” said the PM.

The PM’s sentiment was similar to Shorten’s, in that unless security agencies like ASIO suggest banning it, TikTok will not be banned in the foreseeable future.

“We haven’t got advice at this stage to do that. We don’t use TikTok on government phones, and that is an appropriate measure that we’re putting in place,” Albanese said to ABC radio.

“You need to have an argument for it, rather than automatically just banning things.”

TikTok and its owners have advised the US government that banning the social media app would upset the 170 million Americans who use it for entertainment, news, advertising, and income.