Montana universities set to ban TikTok on campus

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Posted at 4:10 PM, Jan 19, 2023
and last updated 2023-01-19 18:10:06-05

BOZEMAN — Few social media apps have been as popular or loved by students as Tik Tok. That’s why students here at MSU aren’t too thrilled by the announcement of its ban.

“My pastime between classes is walking and scrolling through TikTok,” said Isabella Aversano, a sophomore at MSU. She says she spends quite a bit of time on the app.

“A lot, probably like an hour or two a day,” said Aversano.

But starting on January 20, it might be a little harder for Aversano to go on her daily scroll.

All campuses in the Montana University System will be blocked from having access to the social media app while using the university's Wi-Fi. An order was issued by Governor Greg Gianforte to restrict the app on state-owned devices and networks.

The ban addresses some security concerns. In fact, Gianforte cited “grave security concerns” around ‘ByteDance’, the parent company of TikTok sending information to the Chinese government.

In a campus-wide email, MSU stated:

  • “TikTok may not be installed or used on any university-owned devices like computers, laptops, iPads, or phones.”
  • “Campus chief information officers will block access to TikTok on MUS wired and wireless networks.”
  • “University-administered Tik Tok accounts must be suspended.”
  • “Campuses may provide exceptions to this directive for necessary education or research-related purposes upon request from the campus CIO.”

“I feel like it could be useful for educational purposes, but there should be some censorship while you’re at school,” said Aversano. “It’s not a huge deal though, because it’s only on Montana State’s WI-FI.”

Aversano says the ban won’t be keeping her from using TikTok on campus.

“Probably not, I don’t use their Wi-Fi anyway,” said Aversano.