Confronting Capitol Hill: U.S. lawmakers severely “torture” TikTok CEO


U.S. lawmakers “tortured” TikTok CEO Shou Zi Chew on Thursday (March 23) over data security and harmful content. Zhou Shouzi tried to convince people at the tense congressional Energy and Commerce Committee hearing that the popular video-sharing app takes user safety too seriously and should not be banned. However, lawmakers remained deeply skeptical, saying that Zhou’s claim could not dispel their concerns about the platform.

With Zhou Shouzi making a rare appearance before the U.S. Congress, TikTok is at a critical moment. TikTok, the overseas version of the Chinese short video-sharing platform Douyin, has 150 million users in the United States, and its parent company is China’s ByteDance. TikTok is currently locked in a broad geopolitical battle between Beijing and Washington over trade and technology.

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Congressional Republicans and Democrats are trying to rein in the powerful and important social media platform. Lawmakers from both parties questioned Zhou on a range of topics, including TikTok’s content moderation practices, how the company plans to safeguard U.S. data from Beijing, and the company’s surveillance of journalists.

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