TikTok Fights Back: Sues Montana Over Controversial App Ban

Popular social media app TikTok has filed a lawsuit against the state of Montana in response to a new law which aims to prevent users from downloading the app.


According to NBC News, the complaint filed by TikTok seeks an order to invalidate and permanently prevent the enforcement of the ban.

“We are challenging Montana’s unconstitutional TikTok ban to protect our business and the hundreds of thousands of TikTok users in Montana,” TikTok stated in response to law recently signed by Governor Greg Gianforte.

“We believe our legal challenge will succeed based on a strong set of precedents and facts,” a company spokesperson added, noting that the ban violates the First Amendment of the United States Constitution.

TikTok claims that the law violates federal preemption, which reserves matters of national security and foreign affairs for the federal government rather than individual states.

Governor Greg Gianforte attempted to amend the bill earlier this month to encompass all social media platforms, but the amendment did not make it into the final bill due to the adjournment of the legislature.

Emily Flower, spokesperson for Attorney General Austin Knudsen, acknowledged the anticipation of legal challenges to the law. “The Chinese Communist Party is using TikTok as a tool to spy on Americans by collecting personal information,” Flower stated.

“We expected legal challenges and are fully prepared to defend the law that helps protect Montanans’ privacy and security.”

In addition to TikTok’s lawsuit, five TikTok content creators have also filed a separate lawsuit against Montana, arguing that the ban suppresses speech and exceeds the state’s power over national security.

The ban, scheduled to take effect on January 1, 2024, carries a penalty of $10,000 for each violation, which includes offering the ability to download the app.

The enforcement of the ban would be overseen by the Montana Justice Department.