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TikTok ban challenge set for September arguments

TikTok sues over U.S. law that could ban app
TikTok sues to block U.S. law that could lead to a ban of the popular social media app 01:29

Washington — A U.S. appeals court on Tuesday fast-tracked oral arguments in a challenge to a law that could lead to a ban on the widely popular social media app TikTok.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit set oral arguments over the measure for sometime in September, amid time pressure for the app to be sold by its China-based owner within a year or be removed from U.S. app stores. 

TikTok and its parent company filed a lawsuit against the Justice Department earlier this month over the law, which was signed by President Biden in April after Congress approved the measure as part of a broader foreign aid package. The video-sharing app and its parent company argue in the lawsuit that the law violates First Amendment rights of users, among other allegations. With the petition, the parties asked the court to block enforcement of the rule. 

A group of prominent TikTok users also filed a lawsuit earlier this month challenging the law. 

The logo of TikTok is displayed on a mobile phone screen in front of The White House in Washington DC, United States on April 20, 2024.
The logo of TikTok is displayed on a mobile phone screen in front of The White House in Washington, D.C., on April 20, 2024. Celal Gunes/Anadolu via Getty Images

The app has been under fire by U.S. officials for years amid warnings that China's government could gain access to its data and use it to manipulate or spy on Americans. But a renewed push against the app gained momentum in Congress earlier this year, as lawmakers approved a foreign aid package that included the provisions requiring its sale within a year. 

In its lawsuit, TikTok said the law would force a shutdown of the app by early next year, arguing that the sale of the app is untenable before then. 

"There is no question: the Act will force a shutdown of TikTok by January 19, 2025, silencing the 170 million Americans who use the platform to communicate in ways that cannot be replicated elsewhere," the filing says. 

Scott MacFarlane and Melissa Quinn contributed reporting. 

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