Thursday, October 1, 2020

Won’t sell TikTok’s algorithm to the US, says ByteDance

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Beijing: Chinese company ByteDance has decided not to sell or transfer the algorithm behind its video-sharing application TikTok in any sale or divestment deal, according to South China Morning Post.

Citing a source briefed on the Chinese company’s boardroom discussions, South China Morning Post reported, “The company [ByteDance] will not hand out source code to any US buyer, but the technology team of TikTok in the US can develop a new algorithm.”

South China Morning Post further reported that ByteDance has reportedly informed the US authorities and potential bidders of the decision.

On September 10, US President Donald Trump said, “There will be no extension of the TikTok deadline…We will either close up TikTok in this country for security reasons or it will be sold. … We will see what happens.”

On August 6, Trump signed an executive order banning any US transactions with ByteDance, set to take effect in 45 days. On August 14, the US President issued another executive order, requiring ByteDance to divest its interests in TikTok’s operations in the US within 90 days.

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has claimed TikTok and other applications like WeChat are feeding data directly to China’s national security apparatus.

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