Published on

UNRELENTING: Tom Cotton Unflinchingly Grills TikTok's CEO At Senate Hearing On Child Online Safety

UNRELENTING: Tom Cotton Unflinchingly Grills TikTok's CEO At Senate Hearing On Child Online Safety

In a recent Senate hearing on child online safety, Senator Tom Cotton unflinchingly grilled TikTok's CEO, Mr. Cher, on the platform's alleged ties to the Chinese Communist Party and its impact on American youth. The exchange between the two was tense as Cotton pressed Cher on various issues, including TikTok's parent company, ByteDance, and its compliance with Chinese laws. Here is a summary of their conversation:

Cotton pointed out that TikTok's parent company, ByteDance, is subject to the Chinese 2017 National Security Law, which requires Chinese companies to share information with the Chinese government and conceal it from the rest of the world. Cher acknowledged that all businesses operating in China have to follow local laws but stated that TikTok is a private business, separate from its parent company.

However, Cotton highlighted that ByteDance has an internal Chinese Communist Party Committee, to which Cher agreed, stating that it is common for businesses operating in China to have to answer to their local laws and regulations.

Cotton then revealed that Cher, who used to work as the CFO for ByteDance, was appointed as the CEO of TikTok the day after the Chinese Communist Party's China and Internet Investment Fund purchased a 1% stake in ByteDance's main Chinese subsidiary. Cotton emphasized the timing of these events as a coincidence worth noting.

The senator also raised concerns about Cher's background, stating that he previously worked at a Chinese company called Xi and lived in Beijing for five years. Cotton pointed out that Xi was sanctioned by the U.S. government in 2021 as a communist Chinese military company, prompting Cher to mention that the sanctions were later reversed.

Cotton then inquired about Cher's citizenship and asked if he had ever applied for Chinese citizenship, to which Cher replied that he served his nation in Singapore and was a Singaporean citizen with a Singaporean passport. He also clarified that he has never been a member of the Chinese Communist Party or associated with it.

The conversation took a more somber turn as Cotton brought up the tragic cases of Mason Eden and Chase Nasca, two teenagers who allegedly took their own lives after being exposed to disturbing content on TikTok. Cher acknowledged being aware of the lawsuits filed by the parents of these teenagers against TikTok and ByteDance.

When asked about potential lawsuits from the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), Cher evaded the question, refusing to confirm or deny any ongoing legal actions against TikTok. Cotton highlighted that other companies, including Facebook, have faced lawsuits from the FTC, but TikTok, allegedly under the influence of the Chinese Communist Party, has not.

Cotton also questioned TikTok's role in influencing American politics, pointing out that the Biden campaign and the Democratic National Committee have TikTok accounts. Cher responded by stating that anyone, including political figures, is welcome to join TikTok and that the company encourages all perspectives.

In conclusion, Senator Tom Cotton's relentless line of questioning aimed to shed light on TikTok's ties to the Chinese Communist Party, its potential impact on American youth, and the lack of action from the Biden Administration regarding these concerns.

Keywords

Senator Tom Cotton, TikTok, CEO Mr. Cher, Senate hearing, child online safety, Chinese Communist Party, ByteDance, National Security Law, Chinese laws, Communist Party Committee, Mason Eden, Chase Nasca, lawsuits, Federal Trade Commission, Biden campaign, Democratic National Committee, American politics.

FAQ

  1. What is the purpose of the Senate hearing on child online safety? The purpose of the Senate hearing is to address concerns regarding child online safety and examine the potential influence of platforms like TikTok on young users.

  2. Why did Senator Tom Cotton express concern about TikTok's ties to the Chinese Communist Party? Senator Cotton expressed concern about TikTok's ties to the Chinese Communist Party due to TikTok's parent company, ByteDance, being subject to Chinese laws, including the National Security Law, which requires companies to share information with the Chinese government.

  3. What incidents did Senator Cotton specifically mention to highlight the negative impact of TikTok? Senator Cotton mentioned the tragic cases of Mason Eden and Chase Nasca, two teenagers who allegedly took their own lives after being exposed to disturbing content on TikTok. He also noted that their parents are suing TikTok and ByteDance for their alleged role in pushing their children to take such extreme actions.

  4. Did TikTok's CEO, Mr. Cher, confirm or deny ongoing lawsuits from the Federal Trade Commission? Mr. Cher evaded the question and did not confirm or deny ongoing lawsuits from the Federal Trade Commission against TikTok. Senator Cotton highlighted that other companies, like Facebook, have faced lawsuits from the FTC but TikTok, allegedly under the influence of the Chinese Communist Party, has not.