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Pakistan’s TikTok ban is about censorship, not China

Pakistan’s TikTok ban is about censorship, not China

Pakistan is taking a cue from its close ally China on internet censorship by banning, of all things, a Chinese social media app.



a hand holding a cellphone: BRAZIL - 2020/09/25: In this photo illustration the TikTok logo seen displayed on a smartphone. (Photo Illustration by Rafael Henrique/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)


© Rafael Henrique/SOPA Images/LightRocket/Getty Images
BRAZIL – 2020/09/25: In this photo illustration the TikTok logo seen displayed on a smartphone. (Photo Illustration by Rafael Henrique/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)

The Pakistan Telecommunication Authority on Friday said it would block the short-form video app TikTok because of complaints “from different segments of the society against immoral/indecent content.” The authority said that TikTok, which is owned by Beijing-based ByteDance, has not created a satisfactory way to block offensive content following a warning to get its house in order in July.

TikTok says it has protections in place and hopes to settle the matter.

The ban is notable because, unlike countries such as India and the United States that have already gone after TikTok, Pakistan doesn’t have a tense political relationship with China. The two share close economic, diplomatic and military ties, and Pakistan is an integral part of China’s ambitious Belt and Road infrastructure initiative.

Experts have long been concerned about China’s ability to influence its allies to mirror its approach to the internet. China has worked for decades on its massive censorship mechanism, which shuts out content widely available elsewhere on the web.

So the decision to ban TikTok could be rooted in Pakistan’s desire to emulate its neighbor, rather than act as an attack on China, according to Usama Khilji, director of the Pakistani digital rights group Bolo Bhi.

“This could be taking a page out of the Chinese playbook. We know how heavy censorship regimes are in China,” said Khilji, who added that Pakistan has made use of the “Chinese model of media control.”

And compared with actions taken or threatened by New Delhi and

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TikTok ban: Pakistan cuts ties with app in latest China snub – ‘Immoral and indecent!’ | World | News

TikTok ban: Pakistan cuts ties with app in latest China snub – ‘Immoral and indecent!’ | World | News

The ban was issued by the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority over long-standing issued with content filtering to the app’s young users. TikTok has claimed it follows the “law run markets where the app is offered”. Pakistan is the latest country to ban the app, following neighbouring India and threats from the US.

The Pakistan Telecommunication Authority issued a statement saying the app had failed to follow the country’s request to monitor unlawful content.

They said they issued the ban over “complaints from different segments of the society against immoral and indecent content on the video-sharing application”

The PTA has said they will remain in discussions with TikTok and owners ByteDance over lifting the ban.

But the authority has warned the app it would only be lifted if a satisfactory mechanism to moderate unlawful content was added to the platform.

READ MORE: TikTok ban: Trump humiliation as US judge HALTS ban hours before it was set to start

TikTok has responded to the PTA’s ban, and claimed it remains “committed to following the law in markets where the app is offered”.

They added: “We have been in regular communication with the PTA and continue to work with them.

“We are hopeful to reach a conclusion that helps us continue to serve the country’s vibrant and creative online community.”

TikTok reportedly has over 20 million monthly active users in Pakistan, and is the third most downloaded app in the country.

Pakistani TikTok stars and users have urged Mr Khan to revoke the ban.

Hareem Shah urged the PTA ahead of the ban to reconsider blocking access to the app as TikTok already moderates content on its platform.

She said: “TikTok administration removes such content itself. Hence there is no need to place a ban on the video-sharing application.”

Jannat Mirza, in September, also

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China Stock Market Set To Add To Its Winnings

China Stock Market Set To Add To Its Winnings

(RTTNews) – The China stock market has finished higher in back-to-back sessions, surging more than 140 points or 4.4 percent along the way. The Shanghai Composite Index now sits just beneath the 3,360-point plateau and it’s got a positive lead again for Tuesday’s trade.

The global forecast for the Asian markets is upbeat, with tech shares expected to lead the way higher. The European markets were mixed and the U.S. bourse were broadly higher and the Asian markets are tipped to follow the latter lead.

The SCI finished sharply higher on Monday following gains from the financials, properties and oil and insurance companies.

For the day, the index soared 86.39 points or 2.64 percent to finish at 3,358.47 after trading between 3,286.11 and 3,359.15. The Shenzhen Composite Index surged 73.40 points or 3.31 percent to end at 2,289.36.

Among the actives, Industrial and Commercial Bank of China climbed 1.02 percent, while Bank of China collected 0.62 percent, China Construction Bank jumped 1.47 percent, China Merchants Bank rallied 3.81 percent, Bank of Communications advanced 1.10 percent, China Life Insurance soared 4.48 percent, Ping An Insurance surged 3.80 percent, PetroChina gained 1.21 percent, China Petroleum and Chemical (Sinopec) added 0.76 percent, China Shenhua Energy increased 0.97 percent, Gemdale spiked 2.40 percent, Poly Developments accelerated 2.30 percent and China Vanke gathered 1.00 percent.

The lead from Wall Street is broadly positive as stocks moved sharply higher on Monday, extending the strong upward move seen in recent sessions and sending the major averages to their best closing levels in a month.

The Dow jumped 250.62 points or 0.88 percent to finish at 28,837.52, while the NASDAQ surged 296.32 points or 2.56 percent to end at 11,876.26 and the S&P 500 perked 57.09 points or 1.64 percent to close at 3,534.22.

Technology stocks led the

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China Box Office Poised to Surpass U.S. as World’s Largest Moviegoing Market Amid Pandemic

China Box Office Poised to Surpass U.S. as World’s Largest Moviegoing Market Amid Pandemic

China’s patriotic “My People, My Homeland” has grossed $325 million as of Monday evening local time, earning more money in less than two weeks than the $323 million that Christopher Nolan’s “Tenet” has grossed globally in over a month, according to data from Maoyan and Box Office Mojo.

This weekend, the total China box office hit $68 million, once again far surpassing sales in North America, where cinemas earned less than $9.5 million. To date, the Chinese box office has grossed $1.9 billion so far in 2020. The tally puts China now neck-and-neck with the North American market’s year-to-date earnings of $2.08 billion, according to Comscore. (Both markets are down 76% year-on-year.)

Cinema-going is on the rise in China as the pandemic remains under control, with strong local films set to release in the remainder of the year. Meanwhile, U.S. theaters are heading for trouble as Hollywood studio tentpoles drop off the calendar and the coronavirus continues to rage across the states. Given these factors, it now seems inevitable that the Middle Kingdom will soon surpass the U.S. as the world’s largest film market in 2020.

The performance of “My People, My Homeland” demonstrates the extent to which China’s market has recovered in the wake of COVID-19 and remains robust enough to send local tentpoles too jingoistic to entice audiences abroad nonetheless soaring to great heights.

Produced by “Wolf Warrior 2” and “The Wandering Earth” studio Beijing Culture, the film once again led the box office this weekend with sizable sales of $38.2 million, according to figures from consultancy Artisan Gateway. The omnibus title features five shorts from a who’s who of China’s most bankable directors: Ning Hao (“Crazy Alien”), Xu Zheng (“Lost in Russia”), Chen Sicheng (“Detective Chinatown 3”), Yan Fei and Peng Damo (“Hello Mr. Billionaire”), Deng Chao

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China returns to work with a stock market surge

China returns to work with a stock market surge

Chinese stocks led Asian markets higher on Monday as investors bet on a steady recovery for the world’s No 2 economy, though caution about the fate of economic stimulus negotiations in the United States kept investors wary.



a group of people standing in front of a crowd: A strong rebound in tourist numbers in China as coronavirus cases subside points to a robust economic recovery, analysts say [File: Thomas Peter/Reuters]


© A strong rebound in tourist numbers in China as coronavirus cases subside points to a robust economi…
A strong rebound in tourist numbers in China as coronavirus cases subside points to a robust economic recovery, analysts say [File: Thomas Peter/Reuters]

MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan rose 0.8 percent to a two-and-a-half-year high, buoyed by a 2-percent gain in Chinese blue chips and a 1.5-percent rise by Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index. Japan’s Nikkei slipped 0.3 percent as investors fretted about corporate earnings there.

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“If capital is moving on relative growth rates, then China is looking quite attractive,” said Chris Weston, head of research brokerage Pepperstone in Melbourne. Equities are cheap, yields advantageous and the outlook solid, he said.

“From a virus perspective as well, we’re seeing concerns in Europe, while China is considered a quasi-safe haven.”

China has returned from an eight-day mid-autumn festival with investors encouraged by a robust rebound in tourism and ebbing coronavirus cases.

After finding a small number of new cases, Qingdao city said on Monday it would conduct COVID-19 tests for its entire population of more than 9 million people over five days.

Elsewhere, in the US Midwest, infections are at record levels and the World Health Organization is urging fresh curbs for Europe.

Coronavirus aid plans in the US are also in disarray, with the Trump administration on Sunday calling on Congress to pass a stripped-down relief bill while talks on a more comprehensive proposal were again at an impasse.

Futures for the S&P 500 wobbled either side of flat in

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