August 14, 2020
Survey finds more than half of all Americans back potential ban on TikTok
Most adult TikTok users in the U.S. don't seem to want President Trump to ban the app, according to new Harris Poll data shared with U.S. TODAY.
The survey revealed 64% of active TikTok users oppose Trump's executive order to shut down the ByteDance-owned app within 45 days.
However, 57% of all Americans agree with the President's move to kick the music video app out of the U.S.
The poll was taken by adults over 18, so it doesn't capture sentiments held by teenagers that make up TikTok's primary user base.
The opinion data was conducted on August 8 and 9, just days after Trump threatened to block TikTok and WeChat from operating if they are not sold by their parent companies, which both have roots in China. TikTok responded to the executive order news by threatening legal action. WeChat's parent company said it's reviewing the executive order.
Microsoft has expressed interest in buying TikTok, which would allow it to continue to operate in the U.S. after September 15. A report suggests that Twitter might also be open to a merger with TikTok.
Even if a deal with an American company does take place, most people in the country (62%) think TikTok would still pose a security threat because of its ties to China, the Harris Poll found.
The Trump versus China tech war stems from fears that the country may use apps to spy on Americans. Trump claims the apps "capture vast swaths of information from its users" which could allow "the Chinese Communist Party access to Americans' personal and proprietary information."
Most Americans (67%) are concerned that China is inappropriately using personal data collected from TikTok, the poll found. And 59% of TikTok users share similar sentiments.
(c)2020 USA Today
Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.