TikTok’s CEO is being grilled over the app’s Chinese ownership, potential security concerns and threats to children’s mental health by the US Congress.
TikTok CEO grilled by US Congress addressing app threat
TikTok’s chief executive faced tough questions from the US Congress members who are convinced the Chinese-owned short video app should be barred for being a “tool” of the Chinese Communist Party and because it carries content that can harm children’s mental health.
CEO Shou Zi Chew’s testimony before Congress on Thursday capped a week of actions by the Chinese company aimed at convincing Americans and their lawmakers that the app creates economic value and supports free speech amid growing calls to ban the app.
TikTok, which has more than a billion monthly active users globally, was repeatedly hammered in the ongoing hearing where no MP offered any support. Many talked of a need to rein in the power held by the app over US children.
“TikTok could be designed to minimise the harm to kids but a decision was made to aggressively addict kids in the name of profits,” said Representative Kathy Castor, a Democrat, at the House of Representatives Energy and Commerce committee hearing.