Montana’s TikTok Ban Will Take Effect January 1, 2024

Photo by Mick Haupt via Unsplash

Montana’s TikTok Ban Will Take Effect January 1, 2024

By Movieguide® Contributor

On Wednesday, Montana became the first state to ban TikTok when State Governor Greg Gianforte signed a bill disallowing the app to be available for download within the state. 

“Today, Montatn takes the most decisive action of any state to protect Montanans’ private data and sensitive personal information from being harvested by the Chinese Communist Party,” Gianforte said after signing the bill. 

“TikTok is just one app tied to foreign adversaries. Today I directed the state’s Chief Information Officer to ban any application that provides personal information or data to foreign adversaries from the state network,” he continued on Twitter. 

The law makes it illegal for TikTok to be available for download within Montana. The state would be able to fine any “entity,” such as the Apple App store or Google Play store, $10,000 per day each time a user is offered the ability to download or access the app. 

“Governor Gianforte has signed a bill that infringes on the First Amendment rights of the people of Montana by unlawfully banning TikTok, a platform that empowers hundreds of thousands of people across the state. We want to reassure Montanans that they can continue using TikTok to express themselves, earn a living and find community as we continue working to defend the rights of our users inside and outside of Montana,” TikTok said in response to the ban. 

It is expected that TikTok’s parent company, ByteDance, will invoke legal action in response to the ban, arguing the ban violates the First Amendment and is therefore unconstitutional and illegal. However, if the ban holds, it will go into effect on January 1st, 2024, affecting roughly 200,000 Montanans and an estimated 6,000 Montana businesses that use the app. 

Movieguide® previously reported on Montana’s efforts to ban TikTok: 

Montana’s state legislature passed a bill last Friday that would fully ban TikTok in its state starting in 2024; Gov. Greg Gianforte has yet to state if he will sign the bill into law.  

“The People’s Republic of China is an adversary of the United States and Montana and has an interest in gathering information about Montanans, Montana companies and the intellectual property of users to engage in corporate and international espionage,” the bill said.  

“[The Chinese Government] exercises control and oversight over ByteDance, like other Chinese corporations, and can direct the company to share user information, including real-time physical locations of users,” the bill continued.  

“TikTok fails to remove, and my even promote, dangerous content that directs minors to engage in dangerous activities,” the bill added. 

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