Illustration by Nick Barclay / The Verge
TikTok is facing a direct challenge to its continued operations in the US. The Biden administration is reportedly demanding that TikTok be sold off from its Chinese parent company, ByteDance, or face a potential ban. The demand was first reported by The Wall Street Journal and later by The New York Times.
The White House’s threat is an escalation from the limited bans and pending legislation that have been bubbling up for some time. In late February, the Biden administration said federal agencies would have 30 days to remove TikTok from government devices, and similar restrictions have spread across dozens of US states.
A bill introduced earlier this month would give the secretary of Commerce the ability to prohibit foreign companies…