Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., spoke out against a U.S. TikTok ban by posting a TikTok, saying Big Tech’s “harvesting” of data should be targeted and not a business.
“This is not only my first TikTok, but it is a TikTok about TikTok,” AOC said in the 3-minute video. “Do I believe TikTok should be banned? No.”
AOC’s argument to support TikTok in the U.S. is not to permit the forced technology transfer to the Chinese Communist Party, but to restrict data harvesting by Big Tech companies in the U.S. through “significant data or privacy protection laws.”
“They say because of this egregious amount of data harvesting, we should ban this app; however, that doesn’t really address the core of the issue,” she said, adding other companies like Meta also collect “troves of deeply personal data.”
“So to me, the solution here is not to ban an individual company — but to actually protect Americans from this kind of egregious data harvesting that companies can do without your significant ability to say no,” she continued.
AOC argued if there are significant national security risks with TikTok, Congress should have held a classified briefing on the exact allegations. But no classified briefing has been called, she added, suggesting there is little threat of giving personal “troves of deeply personal data” to the CCP.
“So why would we be proposing a ban regarding such a significant issue without being clued in on this at all?” she said. “It just doesn’t feel right to me.”
AOC warned a ban is an unprecedented block of a private business.
“I think it’s important to discuss how unprecedented of a move this would be,” she said. “The United States has never before banned a social media company from existence, from operating in our borders.
“And this is an app that has over 150 million Americans on it.”
It also fails to protect users from other social media companies collecting data in the U.S. anyway.
“I think a lot of this is putting the cart before the horse because our first priority should be in protecting your ability to exist without social media companies harvesting and commodifying every single piece of data about you, without you, and without your consent,” she concluded.
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