TikTok files lawsuit to halt Sept. 27 app download ban

TikTok

Social media upstart TikTok on Wednesday filed an emergency injunction to stop a Trump administration order that would ban downloads of the app on Apple’s App Store and Google’s Play Store.

TikTok in a filing with the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia seeks an expedited hearing and preliminary injunction against the White House order that effectively removes the app from circulation, reports Variety.

The Trump administration, citing national security concerns related to the app’s Chinese owner, ByteDance, is pushing TikTok to sell its U.S. interests to a domestic company. If no deal is reached, the app will be removed from U.S. app stores on Sept. 27.

“There is simply no genuine emergency here that would justify the government’s precipitous actions,” TikTok said in the filing. “And there is no plausible reason to insist the prohibitions be enforced immediately.”

TikTok’s latest lawsuit arrives as the company attempts to finalize a deal with Oracle, Walmart and other investors, an agreement that Trump approved “in concept” on Saturday.

Terms of the arrangement call for Oracle and its partners to receive a 20% stake in a U.S. TikTok entity, with the remaining 80% held by ByteDance. Oracle will also be granted access to TikTok’s source code to ensure the software does not include backdoors. U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo this week said the new business would be “controlled by Americans,” with ByteDance acting as a “passive shareholder.”

Following news of the deal, Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross on Sunday delayed enactment of Trump’s executive order by one week to Sept. 27.

TikTok in today’s filing said it has “made extraordinary efforts to try to satisfy the government’s ever-shifting demands and purported national security concerns.” The company previously filed suit against the Trump administration in August, arguing that the takedown order violated the company’s right to due process.

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