Indonesia reverses ban on Chinese video app Tik Tok

The Semanggi Interchange stands in front of buildings in the business district in this aerial photograph taken in Jakarta, Indonesia, on Sunday, Aug. 13, 2017. Photographer: Dimas Ardian/Bloomberg

Indonesia has overturned its ban on Chinese video app Tik Tok after it agreed to censor “negative content”, the Communications Ministry said on Wednesday.

Tik Tok, the most downloaded app globally on Apple Inc’s app store in January-March, is popular among young people for its homemade music videos. But access was blocked on July 3 by authorities in Indonesia, home to the world’s biggest Muslim population, for featuring content deemed pornographic and blasphemous.

Ministry of Communications spokesperson Noor Iza told Reuters the app was unblocked by the government on Tuesday.

According to communications ministry letter seen by Reuters, the ban was overturned after Tik Tok agreed to clear “all negative content” from the app and open an office in Indonesia to liaise with the government over content.

The letter said that Tik Tok had agreed to increase the security mechanisms of the app and put additional restrictions on users aged 14-18 years.

Local media reported on July 5 that Tik Tok had promised to set up a team of 20 censors in Indonesia charged with monitoring and sanitising content.

Tik Tok is operated by venture-capitalist backed Toutiao, one of China’s fastest-growing technology startups valued at over $30 billion, people familiar with the matter told Reuters.

Reuters could not reach Toutiao or Tik Tok for comments on Wednesday.

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Reuters

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Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.