- TikTok will be available for download on the Google Play Store and App Store soon.
- TikTok had said the ban was resulting in financial losses of up to $500,000 a day for its developer.
- TikTok content moderators in India have recently removed six million videos for not complying with its community guidelines.
The Madras high court, which had earlier asked the central government to ban the short-form video app, vacated its interim order today (April 24), legal news portal Bar and Bench reported on Twitter.
The matter was taken up today following yesterday’s Supreme Court order directing the High Court to decide on the question of interim relief for TikTok. The Apex Court had stated that if the Madras High Court fails to decide on the interim relief on today, the interim order would stand vacated.
The Bench of Justices N Kirubakaran and SS Sundar lifted the ban today after hearing submissions made by TikTok and Amicus Curiae, Senior Advocate Arvind Datar.
Appearing for TikTok, Senior Advocate Isaac Mohanlal informed the Court that there is technology in place to ensure that nude/obscene content is not uploaded through the app. A counter affidavit to this effect had also been filed by TikTok. Further, TikTok also made submissions on the steps taken to counter the apprehensions raised by the Court following its April 3 ban.
On 3 April, the Madras HC had called for the ban on the download of TikTok, owing to the spread of pornographic content on the platform.
The problem is not limited to India. It’s also been alleged, in several countries no less, that the app is proving to be a fertile hunting ground for pedophiles. In February, the US federal trade commission fined TikTok a record-breaking $5.7 million (Rs40 crore) for violating child privacy laws. In Indonesia last summer, it was banned for featuring blasphemous and pornographic content, but unbanned after a week when the app agreed to censor “negative content.”
TikTok already has content moderators in India, and recently announced that it had removed six million videos for not complying with its community guidelines. Amid India’s election, it has also begun serving users a warning advisory to not post fake news.
The ban worried the social media industry in India as it sees legal worries mounting if courts increasingly regulate content on their platforms.
TikTok allows users to create and share short videos with special effects and is one of the world’s most popular apps. It has been downloaded by nearly 300 million users so far in India with more than 119 million active users in India only, out of more than 1 billion downloads globally, according to analytics firm Sensor Tower.
TikTok had said the ban was resulting in financial losses of up to $500,000 a day for its developer, Beijing ByteDance Technology Co, and has put more than 250 jobs at risk.
TikTok will be available for download on the Google Play Store and App Store soon.