On TikTok, the Trump Administration Is Adopting China’s Own Vision for the Internet
Until recently, the United States has been a staunch opponent of data localization laws.
Over the past seven weeks, the Trump administration has ordered the sale of TikTok to a U.S. buyer, declared that the U.S. government would take a cut of the sale, demanded the transfer of TikTok’s proprietary algorithms to a U.S. company, and announced a ban on downloading the app. In the end, it appears none of this will happen.
Instead, Oracle and Walmart will take a minority stake in TikTok. The algorithms that make TikTok tick will continue to be owned by TikTok’s Chinese parent company, Bytedance. Walmart’s CEO will get a seat on TikTok’s reshuffled board, and Oracle has won the right to sell cloud services to TikTok, meeting the U.S. government’s demand that TikTok user data be stored in the United States.