With little surprise – the potential TikTok “ban” was signed into law by President Joe Biden after some tweaks in the House of Representatives. These tweaks include the bill being bundled with US aid for Ukraine and Israel and increasing the time for ByteDance  to sell ownership from 6 months to 9 months.

For some context, ByteDance is a Chinese internet technology company that has recently come under scrutiny after concerns were raised about the potential for the Chinese Communist government to “weaponize” TikTok as an intelligence tool.

However, perhaps more interesting is the regulatory momentum around TikTok that has spread beyond the United States, even reaching as far as the European Union.

The EU has suspended the TikTok Lite Rewards program, which rewards users for completing certain actions such as watching or liking videos. The EU claimed that the app did not submit a required risk assessment report around potential addictive effects on children.

While work on this regulatory action has likely been in progress for some time now, it is impossible to ignore the timing of this EU announcement, which was made on Monday, April 22. The US House of Representatives sent the newly bundled TikTok bill to Congress this past Saturday, April 20.

Despite attempts by the EU to distance themselves from the US, whether through trade or foreign policy, America’s shadow is difficult to ignore. Considering what this means for Canada, America’s closest neighbour, is important.

It flew under the radar for many, but in early March, the federal Liberals disclosed that they had ordered a national security review of TikTok back in September 2023. And while details are scarce due to provisions in the Investment Canada Act, it does not take a rocket scientist to see that Canada is watching what is developing in the US earnestly.

In a quote reported by CTV, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said, “We’re watching, of course, the debate going on in the United States.”

TikTok has been banned on the mobile devices of federal government officials since February 2023 – and so Canada has already provided notice that they are not afraid to limit access to the popular social media app.

The big takeaway from all these recent events is how crucial it is to keep on top of developing stories. Today’s world is a constant series of dominos falling into each other, cascading and rippling across municipalities, states, and nations. For example, if you weren’t aware of this impending TikTok bill in the US, future regulatory actions of the EU and Canada may have surprised you.

Proactively identifying events that may be of interest down the line and may have the potential to trigger related or possibly unrelated events is essential to doing business in 2024.

At Daisy – we pride ourselves in having over 20 years of experience navigating the most complex and dynamic of cases in both business and politics. If you or your business requires rapid-response research capabilities, situation assessments and more, contact the Daisy Consulting Group for a free consultation.