MISSOULA, Mont.—A federal court today blocked Montana’s TikTok ban. While several states have passed TikTok bans, Montana is the first to ban TikTok categorically. The ban was set to go into effect on January 1, 2024. 

The following can be attributed to Jameel Jaffer, executive director at the Knight First Amendment Institute at Columbia University.

“This is the right result. Montana simply hasn’t offered any persuasive reason why it can’t achieve its interests with means that impose less of a burden on First Amendment rights. If Montana wants to protect its citizens’ privacy, it should pass a privacy law.”

Earlier this month, the Knight Institute asked a federal court to bar Texas from enforcing its TikTok ban against public university faculty pending the outcome of a lawsuit the Institute filed on behalf of the Coalition for Independent Technology Research. The lawsuit challenges the ban’s application to public university faculty, asserting that it compromises academic freedom, impedes vital research, and places a heavy burden on First Amendment rights. More about that case here.  

In March, the Knight Institute joined a dozen other free speech, digital rights, and tech policy organizations opposing federal measures seeking to impose a nationwide ban on TikTok. Read the letter here.

For more information, contact: Adriana Lamirande, [email protected]