The Pakistan Telecommunication Authority on Friday blocked video-sharing app TikTok after complaints for failing to filter out “immoral and indecent” content, ANI reported.
The country’s telecommunication authority said in a statement that it had issued a final notice to TikTok and also gave the social media app time to respond and comply with their instructions to develop an effective mechanism to moderate the unlawful content. However, the authority said TikTok failed to comply with its instructions, resulting in a ban.
“TikTok has been informed that the authority is open for engagement and will review its decision subject to a satisfactory mechanism by TikTok to moderate unlawful content,” the Pakistan Telecommunications Authority said.
Arslan Khalid, Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan’s focal person on digital media, had in July supported the warning the authority had issued to TikTok. “The recent exploitation of female tick tockers, the objectification and sexualization of young girls on TikTok was causing huge pain to the parents and was proving detrimental for our society,” he had tweeted. “Tik Tok is being given final warning to work on their filters stopping obscene content.”
TikTok has not yet issued a statement on the ban, Dawn reported. But it had said in August that Pakistan is among its top five markets where the largest volume of videos was removed over violations of the app’s community guidelines.
TikTok had said it deleted more than 4.9 crore videos which broke its rules, between July and December 2019. About 25% of these videos were deleted for containing adult nudity or sexual activity. The app had said in September that it removed 3.7 crore videos from India in the first six months of 2020.
TikTok, which is owned by Chinese multinational firm ByteDance, was banned in India along with several other apps in June, amid border tensions between the two countries. United States President Donald Trump too had announced a ban on the app last month, but a federal judge temporarily blocked the order. Judge Carl Nichols, however, did not stay a more comprehensive ban order on the app scheduled for November, about a week after the US presidential elections.