What does the Montana TikTok ban mean for creators?

Governor Greg Gianforte has signed a bill banning the use of TikTok within the state of Montana. This comes after fears of data breaches. TikTok are planning to fight this ban however.

Governor Greg Gianforte
Credit: Getty Images

Greg Gianforte a Governor in Montana has signed a bill which will ban TikTok being used within the state. Although there has been a lot of discussion about the video platform being axed within the US completely, it has never been followed through with. Making Montana the first state to ban people from downloading and using the app.

The signed bill will mean those living within Montana won’t be able to access the app through their devices. Officials are calling for mobile app stores to remove the option and make TikTok unavailable for those within Montana. It all comes after reports of private data being leaked. Previously, there were reports of US users information being shared within China.

App stores will face fines for anyone using TikTok

With the bill being passed, it will mean TikTok cannot operate within the jurisdiction of Montana. It will also mean app stores cannot offer the option to download the app within that area either. However, it hasn’t been written into the bill that internet providers are banned from allowing users to access the app.

Despite this though, it will be extremely hard for users to access the platform when TikTok have been banned from being within Montana. Internet providers on board or not, if the app can’t run, then it really doesn’t matter. Users of the platform won’t see any penalties for accessing the platform (if they even can).

However, app store operators will face fines of $10,000 for each violation per day. A violation is simply the app stores allowing someone to download or access TikTok. Meaning app stores could see themselves in difficult situations unless they act quickly to ban the download and use of TikTok within Montana all together.

How will Montana’s TikTok ban affect creators?

Creators within Montana will be the most affected. Those who make a living from creating videos to share with their followers will now be forced to turn to other platforms. The problem is, TikTok is still at its prime. More people head to the video platform to watch short, snappy clips than head to Instagram for Reels, or YouTube for Shorts.

This isn’t to say that creators can’t see success through other platforms. Many Instagram users scroll through the app daily. In fact, they have more monthly active users than TikTok do. However, when it comes to short videos, TikTok wins the battle. There are a lot of creators who only work on TikTok. Taking this platform away could leave them with limited options on where to go next.

TikTok spokesperson fights decision

Brooke Oberwetter who is a spokesperson for TikTok has said “We want to reassure Montanans that they can continue using TikTok to express themselves, earn a living, and find community as we continue working to defend the rights of our users inside and outside of Montana.” So it does seem TikTok aren’t willing to take this decision without a fight.

Actively encouraging TikTok creators to go against the rules being set by Montana officials and instead continuing to make and share videos across the app. The law won’t come into effect for a few months at least, so creators do have some time to continuing posting with no repercussions. Eventually though, if no changes are made to this bill, it will be put in place and creators will have to move elsewhere.

It could lead to thousands of creators losing their fanbase. Turning to Instagram or Shorts is one option, but if their audience aren’t located within Montana, they might not want to budge. Targeting anyone within the state won’t be possible on TikTok. The bill will potentially damage any creator in Montana. Or, those with an audience there.

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