US Judge Suspends Trump Administration's Ban on TikTok

Rebbeca Ren

posted on September 28, 2020 9:13 am

A US federal judge halted the TikTok download ban, which was originally scheduled to take effect at 11:59 pm Eastern time, The Wall Street Journal reported.

Judge Carl Nichols of the US District Court for the District of Columbia, today announced the decision of suspending the Trump administration's ban on TikTok.

During a telephone court hearing on Sunday, John Hall, an attorney for TikTok, argued that Trump's clampdown infringed on free speech and due process rights.

This is the second setback for the Trump administration to curb the use of Chinese mobile apps in the country. Last weekend, a federal magistrate in San Francisco cited First Amendment issues in blocking a proposed ban of the Tencent's messaging app WeChat.

The US President Donald Trump had cited national security concerns Aug. 6 when he issued an executive order barring both the short-form video app TikTok and the multipurpose WeChat app from app stores effective Sept. 20.

Under a Commerce Department announcement this month, the September 20 deadline has been delayed after the president tentatively blessed a deal involving TikTok, its Chinese parent ByteDance, Oracle, and Walmart.

TikTok filed for the preliminary injunction Wednesday, saying Trump’s order was a “pretext for furthering the President’s broader campaign of anti-China rhetoric in the run-up to the US election.”

Beijing-headquartered ByteDance is still negotiating over the terms of a potential deal that would meet the US demands through a partnership with Oracle and Walmart.

According to TikTok, it has more than 50 million daily active US users, and more than 400,000 people in the US each day were downloading the short video app until recently.