Village Approves New Employee Manual, Bans Use of TikTok

By Jeremy Coumbes on February 3, 2023 at 11:24am

The Village of South Jacksonville joined a growing number of entities to ban a popular social media app. The Board of Trustees voted unanimously to approve a new employee manual for the Village during its regular February meeting last night.

The updated manual has been in the works for a number of months as the last update had been approved back in 1999. Later in the meeting, the Board of Trustees approved an amendment to the manual to ban the usage of the social media app TikTok from any village-owned devices.

The amendment was approved to include a resolution stemming from concerns brought to the Board by Village Trustee Todd Warrick who says accessing media such as TikTok could potentially expose village information to foreign hackers.

This is a fairly popular thing right now with the Federal Government, state, and local governments banning TikTok on any government form of communication whether it’s a computer, cell phone that is reimbursed for, or basically anything that you use for village business. Because they can connect into the server and get their email and things like that and we don’t want TikTok included with that.

Because TikTok is owned by ByteDance which is biased out of Beijing, China, and China’s a whole different country, so the Chinese government, they actually own everything that ByteDance has.”

The amendment will also ban the usage of any application provided by a Chinese-owned company.

The ban follows a growing number of similar bans of TikToc following the Federal Government’s ban of its use on any government devices that was signed into law by President Biden at the end of December. The ban signed by Biden came two years after a similar ban proposed by former President Trump was stopped in court.

On Thursday, Democratic Senator Michael Bennet of Colorado, who is a member of the Senate Intelligence Committee, called on Apple and Google to remove TikTok from their app stores entirely due to growing bipartisan concerns over national security.

According to the New York Times, Bennet sent the chief executives of Apple and Google a letter saying in part “no company subject to “Chinese Communist Party dictates should have the power to accumulate such extensive data on the American people or curate content to nearly a third of our population.”

Nearly half the states have banned the app on state-owned devices, and a growing number of State Universities who have also banned its use on system devices.