Pakistan lifts TikTok ban; asks platform to moderate content

Source: Global Times Published: 2020/10/20 9:40:05

TikTok Photo: VCG

The Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) on Monday restored Chinese short video sharing platform TikTok's services, asking the company to "take concrete steps for blocking and removal unlawful content."

TikTok was blocked in Pakistan on October 9 because of the presence of "vulgar and immoral" content that was deemed to have a negative effect on society. According to the PTA, the platform could not come up with a satisfactory content monitoring mechanism.

The PTA's decision had nothing to do with high-profile US government actions taken to crack down on Chinese companies, a source from the Pakistani government recently told the Global Times, noting that TikTok and the Pakistani government are in active talks to resolve the issue.

As a result of continuous engagement with TikTok's senior management before and after the imposition of the ban, TikTok has confirmed it is moderating the plarform's content in accordance with the societal norms and the laws of Pakistan, and says it will ensure users who repeatedly upload unlawful content are blocked from the platform, the PTA said in a statement on Monday.

"PTA, as a facilitator to the users' healthy digital experience on the internet and growth of digital companies, has therefore, decided to lift the ban," it continued.

TikTok, which has often topped the most-downloaded app lists on many app stores, has a sizable user base in Pakistan. It has been installed nearly 43 million times in the country, according data from research firm Sensor Tower.

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