TikTok promises to reveal secrets to Oracle – Bloomberg – RT World News
The social media giant would grant its US partner full access to source code, algorithms and moderation data
The Chinese social media platform TikTok “Soon” allow its American partner Oracle Corp. full access to its source code, algorithms and content moderation data, the company pledged in a statement seen by Bloomberg on Monday following a report that it was falling behind on promises to silo US user data in the United States.
Oracle will soon begin monitoring access to “safe environment” set up on its servers to also host TikTok’s U.S. data, the statement said. The planned moves are part of the social media giant’s strategy to compartmentalize its U.S.-controlled U.S. operations in order to defuse accusations of Chinese spying on its millions of U.S. users, a plan known as Project Texas.
“Many of the major components of Project Texas are already live, and we will continue to bring other parts of the initiative online in the weeks and months to come,” TikTok promised, insisting “Our teams have worked together on all TikTok software that Oracle will continuously inspect and monitor, while ensuring US users have an uninterrupted experience.” The two companies are also in regular communication with the US government, he added.
Oracle has been inspecting parts of the platform’s source code since January in a so-called “dedicated transparency center,” a special room at TikTok’s Transparency and Accountability Center in Los Angeles. However, Bloomberg reported last week that the US tech giant has yet to secure the “unprecedented access to algorithms and associated data models” pledged by CEO Shou Zi Chew before Congress in March.
Quoting an inside source who claimed that the Texas project was “largely in limbo”, the report claimed that outside of preliminary code reviews, there was no “continuous or large-scale monitoring” of TikTok operations.
As originally proposed by TikTok management, Project Texas aims to host all US TikTok user data on Oracle servers and share its inner workings with the US software giant, allowing Oracle to review its source code and audit updates to its application.
TikTok’s statement came the same day the company sued the state of Montana over Governor Greg Gianforte’s passage of a law banning it from operating. “within the territorial jurisdiction of Montana,” which would theoretically force mobile app stores to ban customers from downloading the app in the state.
TikTok spokeswoman Brooke Oberwetter exposed “Montana’s Unconstitutional TikTok Ban” accusing the state government of violating the First Amendment and arguing that only the federal government has the authority to enact such a ban for reasons of national security. The lawsuit is the second filed against the state, after a group of TikTok creators sued last week on First Amendment grounds.
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