Nepal bans TikTok as 'detrimental to social harmony'

Occurred: November 2023-

TikTok was banned by Nepal’s government for concerns that it was 'disrupting 'social harmony, goodwill and flow of indecent materials'.

Nepal Minister for Communications and Information Technology Rekha Sharma told BBC Nepali that the platform spread malicious content and that 'the ban would come into effect immediately and telecom authorities have been directed to implement the decision'. 

According to Nepali officials, no single incident triggered the ban, but TikTok was seen to have been stoking religious hatred, violence, and sexual abuse.

However, the ban prompted criticism from journalists and rights groups, who called it an 'unconstitutional and undemocratic' attempt to stifle freedom of expression.

Developer: ByteDance/TikTok
Country: Nepal
Sector: Multiple 
Purpose: Recommend content
Technology: Recommendation algorithm
Issue: Human/civil rights; Safety
Transparency: Governance; Black box

Page info
Type: Issue
Published: November 2023
Last updated: February 2024