It is news today that the US is wondering if TikTok is a threat to national security. The Italian newspapers obviously avoid explaining how the data of teenagers who make short films would threaten a nuclear superpower, because history in Italy is taught using the same professor who teaches philosophy, so let alone if someone sticks to reality.
On the other hand, though, I am not very surprised by this. Because lately the US has begun to call any competition to their IT companies "national security threat" .
I have already shown long ago how companies like Juniper and Cisco suffer from many more CVEs (and more serious ones) than Huawei , which makes it almost impossible to use "backdoors" as an argument. But since it was telephone and 5G cells, which for all are "something you can spy on while you call", then the masses believed it.
But today comes TikTok. Which competes with Youtube. And this thing does not really like Google, which obviously moved its Silicon Valley puppet, DOnald Trump. And coincidentally what a coincidence, it turns out that "TikTok is a threat to national security".
At this point, it is to be hoped that Peppa Pig does not become worrying for Walt DIsney, otherwise the Italian newspapers will have to begin to explain to persome how Peppa Pig "is a threat to national security".
The thing that is beginning to become insulting, however, is that in the midst of yet another attempt by the American congress to discipline Facebook, this story comes that TikTok is a threat to national security because the data is in China, so it is It is possible for the Chinese government to access it.
Except that the data of Facebook, Google and all the other OTTs are in the USA, and by law FBI and NSA can access them, we may even not feel insulted by this comedy.
The Americans are accusing the Chinese of something that they themselves do, that they have always done, that they have never been ashamed to do, AND THAT THE CHINESE HAVE LEARNED TO DO BETTER THAN THEM.
I imagine the problem is crucial for the US: the catastrophic trade balance shows that American industry is not very competitive, despite all the advantages of production in China and Mexico. The only exceptions have been, so far, the arms industry and the IT industry.
I'm not talking about the US arms industry, but the problem is that Americans are starting to suffer from competition in the IT branch. When this competition came from Europe, that is when Nokia was Nokia and Ericsson was Ericsson and Siemens was Siemens, then they solved it very simply: they destroyed Nokia, they destroyed Ericsson, and they forced Siemens to sell the cellular division. , which, however, did quite well in the early 2000s. Meanwhile the European Union protected French cheeses and Calabrian fried aubergines.
But the Chinese government is not willing to let its samples be destroyed just because US IT companies do not stand up to the competition. The Chinese government will not let Microsoft on duty destroy Huawei as it did with Nokia (moreover, they do not have many French cheeses to defend in the meantime) and will not let adequate pressure on governments (= "bagsful of dollars") convince Chinese companies to sell their strategic divisions.
If anyone wonders why Europe has no champions like Google or Facebook, remember what happened to Nokia, Ericsson and Siemens' mobile division. Americans believe in the market only when they have a monopoly. I mean, they pretend to believe it.
The problem is that now they have competitors who are not willing to let themselves be destroyed in the name of their "alliance" with the USA. And for the first time they find themselves suffering from real competition.
And this is how they react: "if your companies are better than mine, you are an ENEMY OF THE NATION". Demonstrating this in the case of Huawei required a CVE count ( https://keinpfusch.net/huawei-di-su-e-di-giu/ ), but now I don't see why I should waste time demonstrating that TikTok is unlikely to be 'a "national security problem": what should we do, moreover, to prove the contrary?
Going to count how many videos explain how to build an atomic bomb?
On the other hand, the excuse that the newspapers always mention is the excuse of the "censorship of the riots in Hong Kong". The day after the news that Twitter will no longer accept any political advertising would also be credible. It is not clear why the move is applauded if someone hunts "the lamvagy russy" from the US, but then it is illegitimate when someone hunts the malvagy yanki from Hong Kong.
But then there is also the problem of corporate policies. So far, Facebook has justified the most hateful filth and the most horrifying complaints using "corporate policies". They seem the most legitimate motivation in the world, to the point of vastly overcoming foreign laws and constitutions.
Then discover that TikTok cannot have the policy of prohibiting street violence between the contents. Why not? Why can Facebook ban tits and tikTok can't ban street violence?
How come the most horrifying practices of censorship, removal of content, tolerance towards xenophobic and fascist groups have been accepted, in the name of the "company policy", how come we accept that Facebook censors artistic images in the name of a "company policy" , but then it is not accepted that TikTok does not want images of street violence on its platform?
The truth is that we are faced with a double standard, for which the "company policies" are all the same, but some are more equal.
TikTok has the same right to remove the Hong Kong protests from its Facebook platform when it removes "Russian propaganda" content: corporate policy.
If you don't like the "corporate policies" thing, then question them all and make ALL OTTs subject to national laws and related political values: allow American OTTs to do the same thing as the Chinese do, and then point the only finger against the Chinese causes loss of credibility both to the laws and to "political values".
TikTok is just another social network for video. It has a politically questionable corporate policy, like that of Facebook and Google. He has behind him a government that does mass surveillance, just like Facebook and Google. He is obliged to provide his data to his government, exactly with Facebook and Google.
Then there are two cases: o ALL of these social networks are threats to the national security of any nation NOT American or Chinese, or we all accept them as we are.
But in that case, it's time to begin to understand that when an American squeals at someone who is a danger to national security, it just means that some big American company has found itself unable to compete.
The other reasons that lead the Italian press to scream for "national security" are that TikTok has been fined for "not protecting enough the privacy of under 13s" (not like Facebook, which normally protects your privacy TO PERFECTION) and to be "widely used by the American military". Sticazzi: so since you can't explain to your soldiers not to use social networks in service, now the app becomes a threat?
In my opinion the threat is of the idiots in uniform who make a video while dancing on an atomic bomb, but maybe I'm the strange one. And I'm too old to understand the meaning of the "broonies" in the marines.
Ah, yes: the other very serious accusation is that of having changed the conditions of use with other more unfavorable and unclear conditions. Which, NOTOREMENT, neither Google nor Facebook have EVER done, right? You understand all the Terms & Conditions before clicking on "I accept", right?
In all honesty, McCarthyism was already quite ridiculous when it first appeared, now we have come to the pathetic.
I repeat: I hope that Peppa Pig will never compete with Disney products, because then we will have fun reading our press about Peppa Pig, a threat to NATO security.