PTA bans Bigo, issues final warning to Tik Tok over indecent content

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KARACHI: The telecommunications watchdog, Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA), has issued notices to famous Chinese app Tik Tok and Singapore-based video sharing platform Bigo after receiving numerous complaints of spreading pornography on social media.

The authority has issued a “final warning” to Bytedance-owned TikTok over so-called obscene and immoral content on the platforms, days after it temporarily suspended Player Unknown’s Battlegrounds (PUBG).

In a statement issued on Monday night, the telecommunications regulator banned live streaming application Bigo and issued a warning to TikTok after not getting “satisfactory responses” from the company over issued notices.

“In exercise of its powers under the Prevention of Electronic Crimes Act (PECA), the PTA has decided to immediately block Bigo and issue a final warning to TikTok to put in place a comprehensive mechanism to control obscenity, vulgarity, and immorality through its social media application”, the statement said.

The telecommunications regulator had issued notices to some social media companies under the law “to moderate the socialization and content within legal and moral limits” as per existing Pakistani laws. However, the companies’ responses were deemed unsatisfactory.

Earlier, the government banned a popular online multiplayer video game, PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds (PUBG), stating that it was addictive and poses a threat to the mental well-being of young people. The move was met with resistance from gaming enthusiasts and supporters who are now planning to protest the decision.

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