International Pakistan bans TikTok again, this time for ‘peddling vulgarity’

Pakistan bans TikTok again, this time for ‘peddling vulgarity’

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Pakistan has banned TikTok yet again, citing objectionable content on the shortform video app. This is the second time the ByteDance platform has been banned in Pakistan, following a brief 10-day shutdown in October of last year, reported The Verge.

Pakistan Tele­com Authority (PTA) directed internet service providers to block access to TikTok, on Thrusday.

Al Jazeera reported that complaints were made from Peshawar High Court Chief Justice Qaiser Rashid Khan, who accused TikTok of hosting content “unacceptable for Pakistani society.”

According to the Financial Times, Khan said that the platform engaged in “peddling vulgarity” and ordered the ban take effect immediately during a hearing on Thursday.

TikTok in a statement said that the app was maintaining a safe and positive in-app environment.

“We use a combination of technologies and moderation strategies to detect and review content that violates our Terms of Service and Community Guidelines and we implement penalties including removing videos and banning accounts when there are violations,” the statement by TikTok said.

“Our H2 2020 Trans­pa­rency Report shows that we aggressively and proactiv­ely take down inappropriate content in Pakistan. This highlights our commitment to complying with local laws,” the company said.

“We have enhanced moderation capabilities in Pakistan, with our local-language moderation team growing close to 250 percent since September 2020. At the same time, TikTok is built upon the foundation of creative expression,” TikTok said in the statement.

According to Dawn, the company said it was working closely with the PTA to further strengthen safeguards on behalf of users.

“But we are also committed to ensuring our users’ rights to express themselves creatively on the platform, in line with our policies.” the company said in the statement.

The company has tens of millions of users in Pakistan.

Earlier, the app was banned in India last summer.

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