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TikTok Submits Risk Assessment Report to EU Commission

Brussels, April 24, 2024, The Europe Today: TikTok, the popular video-sharing platform, has met the European Commission’s deadline by submitting a comprehensive risk assessment report on its TikTok Lite rewards program within 24 hours of the order.

The European Commission had issued an ultimatum on Monday, directing TikTok to provide detailed information regarding its rewards scheme after the platform initially failed to comply earlier in the month.

“We can confirm that we received a reply from TikTok,” stated a spokesperson for the European Commission.

Now, the EU executive will undertake a thorough evaluation of the response received and determine potential next steps in response to the submitted report.

The TikTok Lite program, introduced in France and Spain, offers a streamlined version of the popular platform optimized for users with slower internet connections and limited memory on their devices. Notably, it features a rewards system that incentivizes adult users with redeemable points for spending time on the app.

The Commission expressed particular concern about how TikTok assessed the potential addictiveness and mental health impacts of this rewards scheme, especially regarding children, prior to its launch.

In parallel to the investigation into TikTok Lite’s rewards program, the European Commission has initiated a broader inquiry into TikTok’s compliance with the EU’s Digital Services Act (DSA), which mandates large platforms to identify and mitigate potential systemic risks.

European Commissioner Thierry Breton emphasized the significance of addressing the risks associated with platforms like TikTok, citing concerns related to addiction, anxiety, depression, eating disorders, and diminished attention spans, especially among young users.

In response to the Commission’s scrutiny, TikTok clarified that the rewards hub within TikTok Lite is exclusively accessible to adult users, imposing daily limits on video viewing tasks for rewards.

“We are disappointed with this decision – the TikTok Lite rewards hub is not available to under 18s, and there is a daily limit on video watch tasks. We will continue discussions with the Commission,” stated TikTok in its official response.

Should the European Commission determine that TikTok failed to meet its risk-assessment and risk-mitigation obligations under the DSA, the company could face financial penalties amounting to 6% of its global annual revenue.

The ongoing assessment underscores the EU’s commitment to safeguarding the digital well-being of its citizens and ensuring responsible practices among major online platforms, aligning with broader efforts to uphold regulatory standards in the digital landscape.

The outcome of the European Commission’s evaluation will play a pivotal role in shaping future regulatory measures and enforcement actions concerning online platforms operating within the EU market.