The government of Nepal has tightened its monitoring of TikTok in a bid to contain anti-social videos. The Ministry of Home Affairs has issued a notice on which it stated that videos that compromise peace and unity in society will be automatically removed. The plan comes after the Ministry held a meeting with Cyber Bureau, MoCIT members, government agencies, TikTok representatives from Singapore, etc. on Friday, Kartik 17, 2080 (November 03, 2023).
In its notice, the Ministry said that TikTok and other social media platforms have become an integral part of our personal and social lives. Using them in a dignified and law-abiding manner helps us exchange new information and stay connected socially.” “Content posted on social media can inflict negative impact on individuals and society and at times bring disrepute into people’s character, compromise peace and security, destabilize ethnic, linguistic, religious sentiments, and adversely affect national unity and national interests.”
The notice ostensibly stressed anti-social and anti-cultural expressions becoming common on the Chinese video-sharing app. Especially, in recent times of religious debates which has stirred some fanatics into persistent jingoism.
The Home Ministry’s statement aligns with a growing section of Nepalese calling on the government to ban TikTok in Nepal. While the idea doesn’t seem to substantiate, the government’s scrutiny has certainly increased. The notice is also consistent with the government’s plan to regulate all social media platforms in general.
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Certain TikTok videos will be automatically removed
The Home Ministry highlights that certain TikTok videos will be automatically removed (with artificial intelligence, maybe!). These are the types of videos that hurt social and cultural sentiments. The Ministry recently held a multilateral discussion with the Cyber Bureau and the international TikTok representatives from its Singapore office on increasing cooperation to remove TikTok videos that constitute misuse of TikTok and social media in general.
The meeting also had representatives from the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology (MoCIT), law enforcement government agencies, etc. The notice mentions that users who post and share asocial videos on TikTok will be brought into the judicial proceedings.
The notice maintained, “Through the meeting, that videos compromising social integrity, spreading hatred and hostility, defaming high-profile figure’s character, and showing explicit content will be easier to identify and remove and at the same time, bring users behind them into the scope of the law.” Fron this notice, we can only assume that the Nepal government is planning on strictly monitoring TikTok videos in Nepal. But are we also headed towards its possible ban?
Check out the notice released by the Ministry of Home Affairs:
Will the Government Ban TikTok in Nepal?
There is a section of internet users in Nepal that’s calling on the government to ban TikTok in Nepal. Expressing disapproval of some of the content on the short-video sharing platform, these detractors are urging for a crackdown on the platform. But there is no substantial information from the government on the ban and there doesn’t seem to be either. However, the government is ensuring a higher level of cooperation from TikTok to contain materials that potentially cause a stir.
TikTok is extremely popular in Nepal. It’s so widely used that during the COVID-19 lockdown, the country’s internet dulled because TikTok consumed much of the bandwidth. But while the usage is high, the misuse has also become a concern, with some “exceeding” their freedom of speech. This has divided the netizens and the public on whether the government should ban TikTok in Nepal. But at the moment, there is no plan for it. But it’s up to everyone to refrain from making any hateful information or spreading falsity and misinformation. Because they can manipulate the truth and create division. Social media helps develop social connectivity and spread motivation and awareness and must be used for the same reasons.
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