Pakistan lifts ban on TikTok after app promises to moderate content
The country’s telecom authority said TikTok has assured to block all accounts involved in spreading ‘obscenity and immorality’.
Pakistan on Monday decided to lift a ban on video-sharing platform TikTok after the company said it will moderate content and block all accounts involved in spreading “obscenity and immorality”.
“TikTok is being unlocked after assurance from management that they will block all accounts repeatedly involved in spreading obscenity and immorality,” the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority tweeted.
On October 9, the telecommunication authority had blocked the popular social media app in the country over complaints of failing to filter out content. It added that the PTA was open to discussions with TikTok if the company was willing to moderate “unlawful” content.
TikTok had said it was “disappointed” that users in the country were unable to access its service and that it was working to moderate the content, Al Jazeera reported. “Over the past year, we’ve made concerted efforts to address questions from the Government of Pakistan around our content moderation process, including significantly increasing the capacity of our local language content moderation team,” a statement said.
It had said that the company would discuss the matter with the country’s telecommunication authority to show its commitment to comply with the local laws.
In August, TikTok had said that Pakistan is among its top five markets where the largest volume of videos was removed over violations of the app’s community guidelines.The company 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.