Pakistan authorities on Thursday again blocked the popular TikTok social media app after a court ruling on a private citizen’s petition that accused the company of promoting obscenity. “The TikTok ban is effective from today,” a representative of the company told and users confirmed they could not access their accounts or view the short video clips that have made the app one of the most popular in the country.
The block came into effect after a court ruling on a private citizen’s petition that accused the company of promoting obscenity. Chinese-owned TikTok has been shut down twice before in Pakistan because of alleged “indecent” content — most recently in March, after which the company pledged to better moderate content. It said Wednesday it had removed more than six million videos from its Pakistan service in the past three months alone — around 15 percent featuring “adult nudity and sexual activities”. In the Muslim nation, posting videos in Western clothes that reveal too much skin is taboo, and is often met with abuse. Earlier this month, small anti-TikTok rallies were held against what protesters called the spreading of homosexual content on the platform. Freedom of speech advocates have long criticised creeping government censorship and control of Pakistan’s internet and media.