Lahore, Pakistan: A provincial court in Pakistan lifted the suspension of TikTok on Saturday, but ordered the popular social media app to address accusations that it featured objectionable content.
After a judgement by a Sindh court hearing a private citizen’s plea against the Chinese-owned app, the Pakistan Telecoms Authority (PTA) barred access for the third time on Thursday.
Government censorship and control of Pakistan’s internet and media have long been criticised by freedom of expression advocates.
The video sharing platform’s massive fan following in Pakistan, many of whom use it to market and sell things online, condemned TikTok’s suspension.
However, critics in the very conservative Muslim country claim that it promotes vulgarity and content that is LBGQT.
TikTok has been shut down twice before in Pakistan because of alleged “indecent” videos — most recently in March, after which the platform pledged better moderation.
It stated on Wednesday that in the last three months, it had removed more than six million films from its Pakistan service, with about 15% of them containing “adult nudity and sexual activity.”
The court had lifted its prior decision blocking the programme on Friday, according to a PTA official, and users confirmed it was working again.
Even senior Pakistani officials looked perplexed by the back and forth.
“I am baffled after reading… verdict on suspension of TikTok,” Information Minister Fawad Chaudhry tweeted.