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Hunting TikTok, An Ugly Game of Trickery

Source:Iris Liang Time:2020-8-4 10:30:06

(News by CCTV) Why is a short video social software popular with global users, especially young users, forced to sell or ban? Is this a choice TikTok must accept when facing the US market? Is a piece of software really dangerous to the national security of the United States? How will TikTok in the storm choose and respond? The healthy development of an enterprise cannot do without a fair and stable business environment. The imposing unfair rules of the game are not only harmful to enterprises, but in the long run, they are also harmful to consumers.

TikTok in the storm

Either be banned or forced to sell. Is this a choice that TikTok must accept in the United States?

"Completely banned, who did TikTok provoke?" This past weekend, many people were asking similar questions. On Friday, local time in the United States, US President Trump issued such a threat.

US President Trump: We are paying attention to TikTok, we may disable TikTok, we may also take other measures, there are many options, but many things are in progress, so we wait for what will happen next.

Trump told reporters that TikTok will be banned from operating in the United States, as early as August 1, and he hinted that he will not support American companies to acquire TikTok. According to U.S. media reports, such remarks caused the recent acquisition negotiations between Microsoft and TikTok, the parent company of the United States, to be deadlocked. At the same time, the general manager of TikTok America also stated on August 1 that "TikTok will not leave."

Vanessa Pappas, General Manager of TikTok America: I want to thank the millions of American users who use TikTok every day for bringing creativity and happiness to our daily lives. We feel your support, we want to say thank you, we will not go anywhere.

Subsequently, U.S. Treasury Secretary Mnuchin stated in an interview with the media on August 2 that the U.S. Committee on Foreign Investment, under his chairmanship, after reviewing TikTok’s business, unanimously agreed that TikTok cannot remain in its current form because it may leak Information on 100 million American users. Mnuchin said that he agreed with the leaders of both houses of Congress that TikTok's parent company, ByteDance, must be forced to sell it or ban the app in the United States.

Because it is possible to leak US user information, either banned or forced to sell, this is the logic of the US government against a Chinese company.

CNN quoted cybersecurity experts as reporting that the allegations that TikTok threatened US security are largely theoretical, and there is no evidence that China has used TikTok user data.

A report on the US "Atlantic Monthly" website titled "Why the United States Is Afraid of TikTok" stated that the US government's fear of TikTok is based on speculation and there is no substantive evidence. The author of the article said that when he was interviewing US Senator Josh Holly, who strongly advocated the threat of TikTok, Holly repeatedly emphasized that TikTok is a “company from China”, as if “this reason is enough.” Not only the media, but many American users have also initiated the online topic "Save TikTok" (#SaveTiktok) to express their attitude.

American TikTok users: Tiktok is a place full of positive energy. Many of us use it to express ourselves and establish connections with others. I don't think anyone feels unsafe with it. We use it again and again, get inspired, get better, and feel better.

Yes, there is no evidence, just because it is a Chinese company, it must accept such accusations.

Jun Ye, a lawyer at the US Gezhi Law Firm: From the point of view of personal privacy information, TikTok is no different from other companies. From this point, the President of the United States does not have much legal basis to prohibit this application itself.



On August 2, local time, Microsoft issued a statement stating that after the Microsoft CEO communicated with US President Trump, Microsoft is ready to continue negotiations to acquire TikTok's business in the United States. However, a deadline has been drawn, before September 15 this year. .

At noon today, Zhang Yiming, the founder of ByteDance, sent a letter to all employees of the company in response to external rumors and speculations about tiktok's US business. The letter said: Do not give up exploring any possibilities. The next solution will consider users, teams, and three companies. This is a factor to be a trusted global company.

In response to the US Secretary of State Pompeo's statement that the Trump administration will soon announce measures against a series of Chinese software such as TIKTOK and WeChat. This afternoon, the Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson also responded.

Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Wang Wenbin: The United States has generalized the concept of national security. Without any evidence, it has made presumptions of guilt and issued threats to relevant companies. This violates the principles of market economy and exposes the hypocrisy and hypocrisy of maintaining fairness and freedom. The typical double standard also violates the WTO's principles of openness, transparency and non-discrimination. China firmly opposes this. As a technology company, SEKO Machinery understands the importance of the fairness of the business environment for a company. In a business environment that encourages innovation, our products can be updated and iterated continuously. In 2018, the two-speed in-cylinder leveling machine was launched, and it was immediately sought after by the market. At the end of 2019, once the servo-driven internal rolling machine was released, it immediately received a positive response from the majority of old customers. In the future, only innovation and research and development can ensure that the company is invincible.

   1. How do you view the acceleration of the US's attitudes and methods towards TikTok?

Shen Yi, Director of the Cyberspace Governance Research Center of Fudan University: From the perspective of the accelerated process in the United States, it has been significantly affected by domestic political factors in the United States, by industrial competition factors, and by complex international political factors. ① At the domestic political level, this government needs achievements, and this achievement must show its continued ability to govern the country. TikTok was very unfortunate and became a target. ②In the competition among peers, some companies have seen TikTok gain huge profits in the blue ocean of short videos. They are jealous. They want to find shortcuts and take shortcuts. ③From the perspective of the general background, the strategic competition and game between China and the United States, China’s catching up with the United States, has triggered panic in the United States. Hysteria, that abnormal and irrational emotion dominates decision-making, so that we The cognition pays more attention to the rules of the system and procedures. The very elegant superpower has completely turned into a gangster and a villain, and has begun to become a robbery.

  2. Use TikTok to generalize the concept of national security

Shen Yi, Director of the Cyberspace Governance Research Center of Fudan University: For American companies, Microsoft, which is negotiating with TikTok, has a very subtle sentence in his statement: "Microsoft may invite other American investors to participate in this event with a minority stake. Acquisition." This is the "sharing" of capital.

Shen Yi, Director of the Cyberspace Governance Research Center of Fudan University: For American officials, from all angles, not only should TikTok be wiped clean, but also a crime must be placed on it. That is why I did this because you constituted it. Threatened the national security of the United States. As our Foreign Ministry spokesperson pointed out, the United States has abused or generalized the concept of "national security". It has to take the value of TikTok from the three aspects of its national image, government’s governance capabilities, and industry capital. Squeezing it to the last bit, leaving no way out, this is a looting and looting that happened in front of people.

  3. TikTok has accumulated over 165 million downloads in the United States. Is it banned? Doesn’t the user’s feelings matter?

Shen Yi, director of the Cyberspace Governance Research Center of Fudan University: The US government does not need to consider the feelings of users, it has to consider the actuarial calculation of political interests. I believe that on TikTok, they also have their own considerations. They may think that this kind of extreme pressure strategy will take effect, or in their opinion, even if all these people are transformed into supporters of the Democratic Party and opposed in the election The Republican Party, based on the electoral system of the United States, is still not enough to leverage the distribution of electoral votes, so they are willing to take the risk to make a political bet, and then we have seen such a result. It looks incredible, but extremely cold-blooded, rational, and refined self-interest.

  4. Under the hunt, how can Chinese companies strive for better results?


Shen Yi, Director of the Research Center for Cyberspace Governance, Fudan University: When Chinese entrepreneurs are moving towards globalization, they have a consistent understanding of a globalized world, in a fair and just order, in a fair and just order, in terms of business and economics. Economy, pursuing pure income, and this kind of income can actually benefit all mankind. Many times people don't like to hear the word "struggle", but business competition is good, or the relationship between state and state, enterprise and enterprise in today's era, it is essentially a struggle. In the course of this struggle, try all possible options, the bargaining chips at hand, the external conditions that can be used, and the maximization to serve one's own interests. This does not conform to our eastern traditional culture, nor does it conform to Chinese traditions. Virtue, but this is the reality of this world. Before we have the ability to change this reality, Chinese companies must learn more to adapt to this reality and carry out their own activities, so that it is possible to achieve the best results in the true sense.

  5. From Huawei to TikTok, why is the way of applying extreme pressure more and more simple and rude?

Shen Yi, director of the Center for Cyberspace Governance Research, Fudan University: Three reasons are common: ①Structurally speaking, American hegemony is declining. This decline is first manifested in a decline in mentality, that is, the United States no longer views competition in a healthy way. , Because it does not have the confidence to continue to win in the competition, thus giving priority to overwhelming the greatest threat becomes the first choice. ② The deterioration of the decision-making circle. The U.S. decision-making circle is in a process of accelerated decline. What they are concerned about is the personal political prestige of politicians. As for this kind of quick and relentless stick, it destroys the aura of institutional rationality created by U.S. hegemony, and even It may make all the US allies feel distressed and worried about this fate falling on their own heads. I'm sorry, this government is not so interested in caring. ③ The nature of American hegemonism or capitalism is the result of its original nature, but for a while, this nature was concealed by a layer of moral aura and institutional concealment, and it is now restricted by various structural factors. Down, the outer shell could not hold up, the inner essence was exposed, and the process of this exposure was beyond people's imagination. So people saw this scene which was a little unexpected, but in fact it was a farce and ugly phenomenon where the limit was pressured to plunder.


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Iris Liang
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