The Trump administration was ordered to postpone a US ban on TikTok set for Sunday or respond by Friday to a request by the app’s Chinese owner for a court order temporarily blocking the ban. The owner, ByteDance, is seeking a preliminary injunction on the ban even as it continues to pursue approvals from the administration for a sale of the video-sharing app’s US operations to Oracle
forced by President Donald Trump
. It has asked the court to weigh its request ahead of the prohibition, which takes effect just before midnight on Sunday. Following a hearing on Thursday, District Judge Carl Nichols gave the US until 2:30 p.m. Friday to agree to delay its deadline or file court papers opposing ByteDance
‘s bid for the injunction. Without a delay of the ban, the judge would hold a hearing on the injunction request on Sunday morning.
On Thursday, the US argued against an expedited schedule in the case, saying ByteDance had filed a separate suit more than a month ago and was late in requesting the injunction in this one. “TikTok is allowed to continue operating with respect to existing users but cannot add users, and the reason for that is that there are significant national security risks” Assistant US Attorney Daniel Schwei told the judge. Meanwhile, ByteDance has applied for a tech export licence in China. This comes about a month after China revised its list of technologies subject to export bans or restrictions for the first time in 12 years, in a manner which experts said gave the government a say over any TikTok deal. It can take up to 30 days to obtain preliminary approval to export such technology.