ISLAMABAD– The Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) on Monday issued a final warning to China-owned short-form mobile video platform TikTok and blocked live-streaming application Bigo over complaints of “immoral, obscene and vulgar content” and “extremely negative effects”.
In a press release issued late Monday, the PTA said it had received a “number of complaints … from different segments of the society against immoral, obscene and vulgar content on social media applications particularly Tik Tok and Bigo”.
The complaints, the regulatory body added, also included the apps’ “extremely negative effects on the society in general and youth in particular”.
On complaints of immoral, obscene and vulgar content, streaming app Bigo has been blocked in Pakistan. TikTok has also been served with final warning on same grounds.
— PTA (@PTAofficialpk) July 20, 2020
The “PTA had issued necessary notices to the aforementioned social media companies under law to moderate the socialization and content within legal and moral limits, in accordance with the laws of the country,” the statement added, noting that responses from the social media giants “has not been satisfactory”.
Citing its powers under the Prevention of Electronic Crimes Act (PECA), 2016, it said it had immediately blocked Bigo and was issuing a “final warning to Tik Tok to put in place a comprehensive mechanism to control obscenity, vulgarity and immorality through its social media application”.
‘Suicide attributed to PUBG game’
Earlier this month, the PTA had temporarily banned the PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds (PUBG), an online battle game, for being “addictive” and detrimental to players’ health.
The “PTA has received numerous complaints against PUBG wherein it is stated that the game is addictive, wastage of time and poses serious negative impact on physical and psychological health of the Children,” the regulatory body had said in its statement.
It had added that the decision came on the back of complaints received from different segments of society as well as media reports claiming “cases of suicide attributed to PUBG game”.