Pakistan bans TikTok for 4th time, for inappropriate content
Pakistan has again banned Chinese-origin popular video sharing platform TikTok on the account of the "continuous presence of inappropriate content on the platform and its failure to take such content down". Pakistan Telecommunications Authority on Wednesday notified about the blocking under relevant provisions of the Prevention of Electronic Crimes Act 2016. This is reportedly the fourth time that the app was shown the door in the country. All the earlier bans were reversed when the app promised to moderate its content.
In October 2020, the app was banned for the first time in Pakistan after the authorities received complaints of indecent and immoral content. The ban was lifted within 10 days following TikTok's assurance of taking action against inappropriate content.
The Peshawar high court had imposed a ban on Tiktok in March which was lifted in April. In Jule, the Sindh high court asked the telecommunication authority to block TikTok as it was spreading immorality and obscenity. This order was also lifted after three days.
TikTok is very popular in Pakistan, though the anti-TikTok sentiment is also very strong. The app, which is banned in neighbouring India, has been downloaded almost 39 million times in Pakistan.
The ban order passed by the Singh high court was in response to a petition filed by a resident of Punjab province, who alleged that TikTok was promoting crime as people were using weapons and drugs in the videos.
Between January and March, TikTok removed 6,495,992 videos making it the second market to get the most videos removed after the USA, where 8,540,088 videos were removed, TikTok said. Pakistan-made videos were also banned, a spokesperson told Dawn.