MISSOULA, Mont.— Challengers to Montana’s TikTok ban asked a federal court today to block the ban while the case proceeds. While several other states have passed TikTok bans, Montana is the first to ban TikTok categorically. The ban is 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.

“There’s really no question that TikTok and its users should prevail here. 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. ”

Last month, the Knight Institute asked a federal court to bar Texas from enforcing its TikTok ban against public university faculty pending the outcome of the lawsuit. The Institute filed the legal challenge in July on behalf of the Coalition for Independent Technology Research, a group of academics, journalists, civil society researchers, and community scientists that works to advance, defend, and sustain the right to study the impact of technology on society. 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 to send a letter to Congress opposing federal measures seeking to impose a nationwide ban on TikTok. Read the letter here.

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