A group of Japanese lawmakers are trying to restrict the use of TikTok and other apps developed by Chinese companies that are following in the footsteps of India, which has already blocked dozens of Chinese apps, and the United States, which are circulating the idea of a ban.
The decision was first reported by the Japanese national broadcaster NHK. The lawyers shared the same concerns as officials in the United States and India that their domestic user data could get into the hands of Beijing, and planned to submit the proposal to the Japanese government in September.
Japan was one of TikTok's first overseas successes, although it was viewed as a tough nut to crack by overseas internet companies. The aspiring localization team went out of their way to attract prominent users, and succeeded Kinoshita Yukina, a television personality after running "six or seven rounds of discussion" with her studio. Kinoshita's participation led to other stars bringing swarms of fans to the platform.
According to the research company App Annie, TikTok currently has the fifth most downloaded app in all categories in the country in the Japanese iOS store.
In response to the test from Japan, a TikTok spokesman repeated the app's distance to Chinese control in a statement to theinformationsuperhighway:
"There is a lot of misinformation out there about TikTok. TikTok has an American CEO, a chief information security officer with decades of industry, U.S. military and law enforcement experience, and a US team that is diligently working to develop a world-class security infrastructure. Four of our parent company's five directorships are controlled by some of the world's most respected global investors, and TikTok USA / user data is stored in the United States and Singapore, with tight control over employee access. ”
Other Chinese technology giants have been keeping an eye on Japan for years. Baidu, For example, runs Simeji, one of the most popular input methods among Japanese. Line is the country's primary chat app, but WeChat is essential for Japanese companies with Chinese relationships – and there are many, as China is Japan's main trading partner. While the Indian ban is certainly a debacle for Chinese developers craving the fastest growing Internet market, the country's ARPU or average revenue per user remains low compared to Western figures. Japan, on the other hand, is a much more lucrative market.