Tuesday June 25, 2024

Pakistan restores TikTok with conditions

By Mehtab Haider
October 20, 2020

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Telecom Authority (PTA) has restored TikTok services with certain conditions.

Top official sources confirmed to The News on Monday that TikTok said to have blocked four million videos during the last three months and suspended 25K accounts. They would invest half a million dollars for training of content producers for producing good content.

However, according to the official statement, issued by the PTA spokesperson, in view of the presence of vulgar, indecent/immoral content on the platform and its negative effects on society, the PTA had continuously been asking TikTok to prevent its platform from disseminating the unlawful content. However, TikTok could not satisfy the PTA about the concrete steps taken for blocking and removal of unlawful content. Hence, the TikTok application was blocked until a satisfactory content monitoring mechanism was put in place.

As a result of continuous engagement with the platform’s senior management before and after imposition of the ban, TikTok promised moderating content in accordance with societal norms and the laws of Pakistan and ensure that the users involved in uploading of unlawful content were blocked.

The PTA, as a facilitator to the users’ healthy digital experience on the internet and growth of digital companies had therefore decided to lift the ban. However, the restoration of TikTok services was strictly subject to the condition that the platform would not be used for the spread of vulgarity/ indecent content and that the societal values would not be abused. The PTA would be constrained to permanently block the application, in case the said condition was not fulfilled. TikTok, in its official statement after restoration of its services in Pakistan, said, “We’re pleased to see that the TikTok app has been unblocked in Pakistan. We appreciate the PTA’s commitment to ongoing productive dialogue and recognize their care for the digital experience of Pakistani users.

“At TikTok, we’re committed to enforcing our Community Guidelines and complying with local laws in all markets in which we operate, as these are pillars of our work to promote a safe and positive community online. ”The creativity and passion of this community has brought joy to households across Pakistan and opened vital economic opportunities to incredibly talented creators, and we’re excited to be able to continue enabling Pakistani voices and creativity as we work to support the success story of Pakistan” the statement said.