TikTok, a popular video application, finally gets some relief as the Madras High Court has lifted the ban on the app. However, there are a set of terms and conditions that the app needs to follow in order to avoid more conflicts.
The bench vacated its interim order of banning the application on Wednesday. However, the Bench said that Tik Tok needs to make sure that no pornographic videos should be uploaded on its platform. Failing to curb this will mean contempt of court. This simply means that if the app maker fails to curb videos that directly or indirectly promotes pornography on its platform will face the brunt of the court.
For those who still don’t know what TikTok is, it is basically a creative application that allows users to upload short-form videos. However, the problem with such kind of applications is that people tend to misuse it. The content-sharing platform becomes a hub for soft porn and with a huge number of people, especially pre-teens or teenagers jumping into this platform to get the fame of glory has also attracted many sexual predators. The app says that it is just a platform company, however, the content available on the platform will do more harm to the minors.
This was the major reason why Madras High Court banned the application in India. However, India is not the only country to ban this application. Indonesia banned in July last year citing similar negative content that may have a negative influence on teenagers. Bangladesh was another country that banned Tik Tok in a move to declare war against pornography.
Tik Tok says that it just a platform where users can simply upload videos and the company should not be held liable for their actions. Righty said that Tik Tok does not directly promote pornography. However, by creating an ecosystem like this, they are contributing to the problem to some extent.
Interestingly, banning the application does not seem to be the solution. As per a report by the Mint, that since the TikTok ban, the downloads of the application rose to roughly 10 to 15 times from third-party sources like APKMirror. However, it seems that Tik Tok is trying to up some efforts to look into this problem. The company, during its petition, told the Supreme Court that users flagged only a tiny proportion of TikTok videos, which shows that only “very minuscule” proportion of its content was considered inappropriate.
The app maker further revealed that it has an in-built feature, which automatically deletes the inappropriate content within 15 minutes of upload. It further says that the company will appoint a nodal officer to look into such matters. Like we said, a simple ban will not solve the problem. India needs to come up with strict laws like COPPA in the US. The Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act or COPPA, in the USA, restrict websites and applications that allow teens to not track and post personal information on the child users. A similar law in India could help protect the minors from these types of content.