TikTok Announces the Suspension of its New App's Incentives Scheme, EU Scrutiny

By Consultants Review Team Thursday, 25 April 2024

Following a probe by the European Union, TikTok said that it was discontinuing a function in its offshoot app, TikTok Lite, that paid users for viewing and like videos in France and Spain.

In a statement, the well-known short-form video hosting site, which is owned by the Chinese internet business ByteDance, stated that the ban will remain in effect "while we address the concerns that they have raised".

"Our children are not guinea pigs for social media," declared Thierry Breton, the chief tech enforcer for the European Commission, who announced that the EU investigation will go forward.

In March, TikTok Lite was introduced in France and Spain. Interestingly, the program is only accessible in these particular EU nations. It gave users over the age of eighteen access to a website where they could accumulate points and redeem them for gift cards or vouchers.

The software requires less space on a smartphone and was made to function with slower internet connections.

"Dangers to People's Mental Health"

On Monday, April 22, the European Commission made public its intention to investigate TikTok Lite and threatened to revoke its rewards program due to worries that it would endanger the mental health of its users.

The platform was given by the commission a deadline of Wednesday by which TikTok might furnish further information and a defense against the impending ban.

Breton released a statement saying that "our cases against TikTok on the risk of addictiveness of the platform continue".

"We suspect that this (rewards) feature could generate addiction and that TikTok did not do a diligent risk assessment and take effective mitigation measures prior to its launch," he said.

The investigation is the European Union's second against the short-form video platform under a new law, the Digital Services Act (DSA), which makes it mandatory for digital firms operating in the 27 countries to police online content effectively.

Earlier, in February, the commission launched a formal investigation into TikTok over apparent violations of its commitments towards safeguarding minors online.

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