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Thursday, March 23, 2023

TikTok Pulls Out of Russia, Amid Ukraine Invasion

Following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, video-sharing site TikTok and streaming behemoth Netflix have curtailed and halted their services in Russia, respectively.

TikTok said it has halted live broadcasting and the creation of new material on its site while it considers new legislation aimed at combating “false news” regarding Russia’s armed services.

Netflix announced their withdrawal in response to the invasion.

Visa, Mastercard, and PwC are among the western companies that have discontinued relationships.

TikTok, which has 36 million users in Russia, said the action was made to protect its employees and users.

Since Friday, anyone who publishes news about the military that is judged untrue might face up to 15 years in prison.

The Kremlin, for example, disagrees to the fight being referred to as a war and instead refers to it as a “special military operation.”

Many news organizations have already ceased reporting in Russia, claiming that they are no longer able to operate independently.

“In light of Russia’s new ‘fake news’ law, we have no option but to halt live-streaming and new material to our video service while we assess the safety implications of this law,” TikTok stated in a series of Tweets.

“There will be no impact on our in-app messaging service.”

“We will continue to analyze the emerging conditions in Russia to decide when we might be able to fully resume our services with safety as our first concern,” the statement continued.

TikTok, a Chinese-owned app with one billion users globally, has been chastised for failing to condemn Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, unlike Meta, which owns Facebook and Instagram, and Twitter.

However, in a lengthy statement posted on its website on Sunday, it called the conflict in Ukraine “devastating,” saying it had “caused anguish to our society and our people.”

Cedric Blackwater
Cedric Blackwater
Cedric is a journalist with over a decade of experience reporting on local US news, and touching on many global topics. He is currently the lead writer for Bulletin News.

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