The social media app TikTok is the most popular among young Americans, leading over Youtube since 2020, according to a survey released Wednesday. The latest findings come as federal and state officials call for a national ban on the Chinese-affiliated app.
According to the data from the parent-control software maker, Qustodio, Americans ages four to 18, on average, used TikTok 107 minutes each day, which is 60 percent longer than the time they spent on Youtube, at 67 minutes.
The gap is greater than in 2020 when the popular app overtook YouTube, and children spent an average of 82 minutes per day on TikTok compared to 75 minutes on YouTube. The dominance of the Chinese-affiliated app clashes with efforts by state governors throughout the United States, ordering state and local officials and universities to delete the app from their devices.
In last year’s omnibus spending bill, Congress banned the app from federal devices, with lawmakers worrying that the app, through its Beijing-based owner Byte Dance, is granting the Chinese Communist government the ability to view Americans’ user data.
Missouri Republican Senator Josh Hawley and House Congressional members have proposed a nationwide ban on the app, citing the numerous concerns technology experts have revealed about TikTok.
In December of last year, TikTok’s parent company Byte Dance fired four employees who illegally accessed the personal data of two journalists on the platform.
In response to the calls to ban the platform, TikTok has described such efforts as “politically motivated,” saying that such measures will not advance America’s national security. TikTok has also said it has taken steps to isolate American user data from other parts of its business, including a partnership with the American-based tech company Oracle.
According to reports, the House Energy and Commerce Committee said TikTok CEO Shou Zi Chew will appear before the panel in March and will face questions from lawmakers on the app’s relationship with the Chinese government.
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