Montana has banned TikTok and YouTubers in the state are fighting back.
Last week, Montana Gov. Greg Gianforte signed into law SB 419, a law banning TikTok in the state. It follows a ban on using TikTok on government devices in Montana, a far less controversial ruling that many other states and countries have also implemented. This law is by far the most aggressive and brutal TikTok ban the US has seen to date
The ban goes into effect on January 1, 2024, unless the court stops it — and that’s exactly what some creators of the app are trying to do.
What Does Montana’s TikTok Ban Actually Mean?
A Group of TikTok users(opens in a new tab) Are Lawsuit against Montana’s ban(opens in a new tab) alleging that it violates Montanan’s First Amendment rights by not allowing citizens to participate in a forum to share and receive speeches – An argument also made by other organizations such as the Knight Institute(opens in a new tab). It is also stated in the lawsuit(opens in a new tab) that the ban violates the Commerce Clause because it restricts interstate trade. After all, you can’t shop or sell on TikTok if you can’t use TikTok.
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“Montana’s alleged interests in SB 419 are not legitimate and do not support a blanket ban on TikTok,” the lawsuit reads. “Montana has no authority to enact legislation that it believes to advance United States foreign policy or its national security interests, nor may Montana ban an entire communications forum based on its belief that some speech shared through that forum, while protected by are protected.” The First Amendment is dangerous. Montana can no more ban its residents from watching or posting on TikTok than the Wall Street Journal could ban because of who owns it or the ideas it publishes.”
This lawsuit is the first legal challenge to the ban, but these YouTubers likely won’t be the only ones taking TikTok to court.