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Trump Gives Microsoft 45 Days to Seal TikTok Deal

U.S. President Donald Trump has changed his mind on plans to ban the popular app TikTok.

And on Sunday (August 2), two sources familiar with the matter told Reuters Trump has also agreed to to give TikTok’s Chinese parent 45 days to negotiate its sale to U.S. tech giant Microsoft.

TikTok has emerged as a flashpoint in escalating U.S.-China tensions.

U.S. officials say it poses a national security risk because of the personal data it handles.

Trump had initially dismissed the idea of a Microsoft sale on Friday when he first said he would ban the app in the U.S.

But following a discussion between Trump and Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella, the company said in a statement that it would continue negotiations to buy the app and that it aimed to reach a deal by Sept. 15.

“We’re looking at TikTok, we may be banning TikTok…”

It was not immediately clear what pushed Trump to switch course.

However, one of the sources who spoke to Reuters said several prominent Republican lawmakers have urged him to back selling TikTok to Microsoft.

Banning the app would also alienate many young TikTok users ahead of the U.S. presidential election in November — and would likely trigger a wave of legal challenges.

Bytedance initially hoped ot keep a minority stake in the business.

However, on Saturday Reuters reported that the company agreed to divest from TikTok’s U.S. operations completely after the White House rejected that offer.

Under the newly proposed deal, Microsoft said it also would take over TikTok’s operations in Canada, Australia and New Zealand.

And it says it would ensure that all private data belonging to TikTok’s American users is transferred to and remains in the United States.

If Microsoft’s TikTok bid were to succeed, it would become a major competitor to social media giants like Facebook and Snapchat.

ByteDance and the White House did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Video Transcript

 US President Donald Trump has changed his mind on plans to ban the popular app TikTok. And on Sunday, two sources familiar with the matter told Reuters Trump has also agreed to give TikTok’s Chinese parent 45 days to negotiate its sale to US tech giant, Microsoft. TikTok has emerged as a flashpoint in escalating US-China tensions. US officials say it poses a national security risk because of the personal data it handles. Trump had initially dismissed the idea of a Microsoft sale on Friday when he first said he would ban the app in the US.

DONALD TRUMP: We may be banning TikTok.

 But following a discussion between Trump and Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella, the company said in a statement that it would continue negotiations to buy the app, and that it aimed to reach a deal by September 15. It was not immediately clear what pushed Trump to switch course. However, one of the sources who spoke to Reuters said several prominent Republican lawmakers have urged him to back selling TikTok to Microsoft. Banning the app would also alienate many young TikTok users ahead of the US presidential election in November and would likely trigger a wave of legal challenges.

ByteDance initially hoped to keep a minority stake in the business. However, on Saturday, Reuters reported that the company agreed to divest from TikTok’s US operations completely after the White House rejected that offer. Under the newly-proposed deal, Microsoft said it would also take over TikTok’s operations in Canada, Australia, and New Zealand.

And it says it would ensure that all private data belonging to TikTok’s American users is transferred to and remains in the United States. If Microsoft’s TikTok bid were to succeed, it would become a major competitor to social media giants like Facebook and Snapchat. ByteDance and the White House did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Featured Image Credit: Getty

 

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