Citizens of Montana are fighting back against their state’s recent legislation against TikTok. In case you missed it, Montana has become the first state in America to ban TikTok. In a Senate Bill signed on Wednesday, Montana Gov. Greg Gianforte stated his aim is to protect the private information of the residents of his state.
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According to NPR, Senate Bill 419 highlights the Chinese government as a reason for the ban, citing the nation as a potential threat.
“The Chinese Communist Party using TikTok to spy on Americans, violate their privacy, and collect their personal, private, and sensitive information is well-documented,” Gov. Gianforte said.
The counter lawsuit was filed on May 17, led by Samantha Alario, Heather Dirocco, Carly Ann Goddard, Alice Held, and Dale Stout, who identify as “creators and viewers of content on TikTok.”
“Montana has no authority to enact laws advancing what it believes should be the United States’ foreign policy or its national security interests, nor may Montana ban an entire forum for communication based on its perceptions that some speech shared through that forum, though protected by the First Amendment, is dangerous,” they said in the lawsuit, according to Music Business Worldwide.
“Even if Montana could regulate any of the speech that users share through TikTok, SB 419 wields a sledgehammer when the First Amendment requires a scalpel.”
The plaintiffs argue SB419 is unconstitutional and ignores national security and foreign economic factors.
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The owner of TikTok, tech giant ByteDance, denied sharing information. However, government officials highlight the records of consumers are available as the nation’s government allows for storing public records.
The ban will take effect on Jan. 1, 2024, but it is currently unclear on how it will be enforced, and is also facing opposition that the bill is unconstitutional.