TikTok's Parent Company, Bytedance, To Develop Algorithm Clone Amid Regulatory Pressure in US

TikTok is reportedly working on creating a clone of TikTok's recommendation algorithm to operate independently, as the company faces regulatory pressure in US

TikTok's parent company, Bytedance, is reportedly developing a clone of its recommendation algorithm as the company faces regulatory wrath in US.

The move is expected to create a version of TikTok that operates independently from its Chinese parent company and is more acceptable to suit the regulatory climate of US, which wants to slap a ban on the short-video-form hosting platform.

According to a report by Reuters, the parent company began splitting the source code late last year before a bill to sell TikTok's U.S. operations gained momentum in Congress. The bill was officially passed and became a law in April month.

Sources cited in the report mentioned that ByteDance is working on splitting TikTok's source code and laying the groundwork for potentially divesting its U.S. assets. However, the company had stated earlier that "selling US assets" is not on the table.

After Reuters posted an article on this matter, TikTok denied it by calling it misleading and inaccurate. They said that divesting their U.S. operations as demanded by the law isn't feasible due to commercial, technological, and legal reasons, especially within the mandated 270-day timeline.

"We stand by our reporting," a Reuters spokesperson said.
As per sources cited in the report, hundreds of engineers from both ByteDance and TikTok in the US and China were directed to split millions of lines of code, in the past few months. The company wants to develop a distinct code branch independent of the systems used by ByteDance's Chinese TikTok version, Douyin. This involves removing any data related to Chinese users.

The social media platform has been under intense scrutiny from regulators in the US, mainly due to concerns about data privacy and the handling of sensitive user information.

Related Stories

No stories found.
Outlook Business & Money