A federal judge has delayed the banning of TikTok downloads in the US, just hours before the video sharing platform was set to be removed from app stores.
As reported by Pitchfork, US District Judge Carl J. Nichols issued the ruling on Sunday (September 27), commenting that the company hadn’t had enough time to defend itself against Trump’s executive order to ban the app.
Additionally, Variety reported that Nichols said the US Government’s action was “largely a unilateral decision with very little opportunity for the plaintiffs to be heard, and the result – whether we’re talking about November or tonight – is a fairly significant deprivation.”
Though he blocked the September 27 ban, Nichols denied TikTok’s request to overturn Trump’s November 12 deadline to sell its US assets.
The video sharing platform released a statement following the hearing, thanking the court for ruling against its removal from app stores.
— TikTok_Comms (@tiktok_comms) September 28, 2020
“We’re pleased that the court agreed with our legal arguments and issued an injunction preventing the implementation of the TikTok app ban,” said the company.
“We will continue defending our rights for the benefit of our community and employees. At the same time, we will also maintain our ongoing dialogue with the government to turn our proposal, which the President gave his preliminary approval to last weekend, into an agreement.”
Trump signed an executive order against the app in August, on the grounds that it poses a threat to national security, due to being owned by Chinese company, ByteDance. He ordered ByteDance divest from US operations of the app by selling its assets to a US company, or TikTok would face removal from app stores by mid-September.
Microsoft made a bid for the app but was rejected, with ByteDance choosing US tech giant Oracle as its “technology partner”. Along with Walmart, they would form a new US based company called TikTok Global, with Walmart holding 7.5 per cent ownership against Oracle’s 12.5 per cent.
As reported by Variety, the proposed deal received a provisional ok from Trump, but is yet to be officially approved.