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Oracle’s TikTok deal accomplishes nothing

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Karlston

Oracle’s TikTok deal accomplishes nothing

Adding a ‘trusted tech partner’ only addresses a sliver of the national security concerns

Larry Ellison Delivers Keynote At Annual Oracle OpenWorld Conference

Photo by Justin Sullivan / Getty Images

On Sunday night — just two days before the deadline set by Microsoft — the TikTok deal finally came through. Oracle will be taking over stewardship of TikTok’s US operations, after Chinese parent company ByteDance turned down a more ambitious bid from Microsoft. This morning, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin confirmed the deal and said it would be presented to President Trump with a recommendation later this week. But barring a complete catastrophe, TikTok will keep operating in the US. However weird the details are, TikTok’s 1,400 US employees and tens of millions of US users are breathing a sigh of relief this morning.

 

But the last-minute sale is strange in a number of ways — for a start, it’s not a sale at all. After months of insistence that TikTok sever its US operations from Chinese ownership, we’re now settling for a vague partnership between Oracle and the US TikTok operation. It’s still unclear exactly what Oracle’s “trusted tech partner” status entails, but it’s definitively not a sale, and it’s unlikely Oracle is taking over any significant operations from the US TikTok offices. Microsoft’s version of the deal would have severed American TikTok from Europe and Asia entirely, but Oracle’s version of the deal leaves it mostly intact. US TikTok will stay the same as Korean TikTok and Nigerian TikTok; it’s just getting an extra babysitter. That makes it less of a sale and more of a glorified hosting deal. It lets Trump say he’s solved the problem but doesn’t do much else.

 

Microsoft underlined this point in its official statement announcing it had not been chosen. “We would have made significant changes to ensure the service met the highest standards for security, privacy, online safety, and combatting misinformation,” the company said in its statement. “We look forward to seeing how the service evolves in these important areas.”

 

The implicit message is clear: we wanted to change TikTok to actually make it safe, and ByteDance said no.

 

There’s no indication that Oracle’s partnership makes those changes, which makes the whole deal seem suspect. “A deal where Oracle takes over hosting without source code and significant operational changes would not address any of the legitimate concerns about TikTok,” former Facebook security chief Alex Stamos said on Twitter, “and the White House accepting such a deal would demonstrate that this exercise was pure grift.”

 

Having Oracle take over TikTok’s US hosting only addresses a sliver of the problem. It means China can’t directly siphon user data — but it probably couldn’t have before, given the app’s US headquarters. Oracle’s trusted partner status could include some code audits, but as long as the company isn’t writing the code, it will be hard to stop ByteDance from smuggling in some tracking malware if it wants to. Oracle won’t be rewriting the TikTok algorithm or handling moderation, so it will be just as easy for ByteDance to push Chinese propaganda or censor embarrassing messages. Oracle will be a contractor rather than a subsidiary, but it’s not clear that will make them any less vulnerable to pressure or subterfuge. If you were concerned about TikTok before, there’s no obvious reason you should be less concerned now.

 

The clear winner is Oracle, which will presumably get paid handsomely by TikTok for its trust-partnering services and for making this whole nightmare go away. An infrastructure and cloud software business, Oracle has usually been out-muscled by larger players like Microsoft and Amazon. At the same time, Oracle co-founder and chairman Larry Ellison has been an outspoken Trump supporter within Silicon Valley, hosting a fundraiser for the president at his Palm Springs compound in February, and telling Forbes in April, “I support him and I want him to do well.” Given the president’s track record, it will be hard to dismiss the concern that he’s steered a cushy contract to a political ally instead of taking the national security concerns seriously.

 

The initial prospect of a US-focused buyout had grown more difficult in the past week after China placed export controls on algorithms like the one that powers TikTok’s For You page. Recent reports suggested ByteDance simply wasn’t interested in a sale and would prefer to have the app shut down than have the US portions cleaved off and sold. It’s hard to know if that was a real position or just a negotiating tactic, but the result is the same: China was calling Trump’s bluff. A different leader might have pushed harder for a full sale or found some compromise that addressed more of the national security concerns — but finding that the drama had turned against him, it seems like Trump simply folded his hand and moved on.

 

It’s an anticlimactic end, but things could be worse. TikTok faced the real risk of being shut down in the US, which seems unlikely to happen now. The Treasury Department was prepared to block US transactions to ByteDance starting on September 20th (that is, next Sunday). And absent some kind of compromise, TikTok could have easily become collateral damage in Trump’s feud with China. That would have been a gross abuse of power, as I wrote last month, and it’s good we avoided it.

 

But every time someone calls your bluff and wins, it gets a little harder to play the game. We’re still in the early days of a long fight over Chinese technology — how much we can trust it and how much we can afford not to. That fight is bigger than TikTok or Trump. Because of the TikTok fiasco, it will be harder to take a future president seriously when they raise the alarm about a piece of network hardware or a tracking cookie leaking data back across the great firewall. In this game, America’s strength is its credibility and its ability to influence allies. Both of those have taken a clear hit from the Oracle deal. Trump himself stepped away with only a minor loss — but like so many of his deals, he was playing with someone else’s money.

 

 

Oracle’s TikTok deal accomplishes nothing

 

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steven36

TikTok users dont   care   about  if China  is spying  on them or not they just  dont  want  it too die ,  And most  are  tech illiterate so they dont know who Oracle is  .Only thing they care about is getting  1000s of followers  and makeing money from the app.    It dont take a genius to install a free aap from Google  or Apple store  and not even bother to read the privacy policy . 

 

That crowd  is the same people you see on Instagram  , Facebook ,Twitter  and YouTube for years they  sold out to data harvesting  years ago just like there parents did and they profit off it . They not Linux nerds that are tech savvy  and there not Microsoft and Google  fanboy's who are Anti Oracle because Oracle sues them for stealing Java  .   They dont even know  what  Oracle is  so i doubt they know what Java is  . :lmao:

 

More info: What’s Oracle? TikTok users react to proposed Oracle deal

https://fortune.com/2020/09/14/tiktok-users-react-oracle-deal-microsoft-walmart-china-bytedance/

 

 

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BimBamSmash

As long as it gets the current PotUS's name on the deal in one way or another, he will be content. He is all "me, me, me", after all. I think matters of national security were never his true concern in this particular case.

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steven36
11 hours ago, BimBamSmash said:

As long as it gets the current PotUS's name on the deal in one way or another, he will be content

This don't seem to be True he dont be content with the offer at all.

 

Trump is not going to sign off on the deal yet  he says

 

Quote

"I'm not prepared to sign off on anything," Trump told a press briefing at the White House, adding that he expected the deal to be presented to him on Thursday. He emphasized the deal "has to be 100% as far as national security is concerned."

 

Trump suggested he had misgivings about a deal that allows ByteDance to keep a majority stake in TikTok.

 

Quote

"Conceptually, I can tell you I don't like that," he said. "If that's the case, I'm not gonna be happy."

 

This  is crazy , this sign off  dont have nothing to do with software  it has to do with politics  Trump even wanted  the Government  to get a  cut  of it being sold  tell his lawyers  told him the  government had no authority to require such a payment. The users  dont care .

 

Even  if the app got banned  in the USA Byte dance will  be fine they have more users  on the China version than they have on  western version anyways  but its USA base is Huge.

 

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steven36

from what i get from the NYT  Article that politics is going to end up killing the deal we will see. Trump  can't make such decisions without his own party turning on him .He likes Larry Ellison, Oracle’s founder a lot   .Maybe  that the reason Bytedance chose Oracle but  it not  that simple  as long  as Bytedance owns  any part of   it  he takes a chance of  the Republicans turning on him  so he changed his tune about  it , because it's too close to Nov.  for  this . Personally  i wish he would take the deal and dig his own grave were  he has almost no chance in us worrying about him for the next 4 years .I'm tired of hearing his name  and I'm tired of him.

 

I guess this link  is OK to post here? it's technology news and this is a forum  of technical nature 

 

Backlash Grows to TikTok-Oracle Deal

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/09/16/technology/tiktok-oracle-opposition.html

 

Quote

That proposal is now under review by a secretive, multi-agency national security panel, the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States, which is expected to submit its recommendation to President Trump for a final decision on Thursday.

 

But the catch 22 is if they  don't approve it it has 0 change of going trough , If they do approve it has very little chance of going trough,

Quote

But while the proposal winds its way through the review process, some lawmakers are increasingly up in arms about it.

 

Trump  going make some people mad no matter what he does . :lmao:

 

PS : Any Chinese  business in the USA  is screwed if it gets ban   if they want to flat out sell that part of it  and you can thank China for that  because of new regulations that can block the sale of Chinese Tech .  The Chinese Government has to approve it's sale  and  there that Government does get a cut of  it all.

 

Big Tech in USA the Government gets very little not even taxes  there all being investigated  by the IRS  for not paying taxes for years  and the government dont have the money it takes to take them to court  too make them pay,  then Google founders want to complain about China is going to get ahead in Tech because lack of Government funding.  Of course they are going to get ahead because  Big Tech not paying there taxes  and  storing the money in offshore  accounts  is going to brake capitalism  in a few years  from now. Profit over advancement  is going  to be the stick in the wheel that brakes it.

 

It's simple

Quote

Under capitalism, companies live by the motivation for profit. They exist to make money.

 

No more motivation  , no  more profit  ,   that the end of capitalism.  the very core of it is rotten anyway  all the money goes to the 1% while the others work for them  and make it successful   just to make ends meat . the middle  class and the poor . 

 

You  can already see it dying slowly   Microsoft  former CEO  once said Linux was a cancer and due to lack of motivation for profit   BIG Tech  now comes to the open source community (non profit)  for motivation and ideas they are mixed economy  Technologies . Microsoft  CEO today says he loves Linux. the USA government   can ban  all the stuff  they want from  China  but that's going  stop them from moving  forward  because the open source community  dont hide code for profit  and  is not controlled by any government  and were glad to have China  on our Team as long as they give back. That were most Google projects build there software from  if  they didn't  they wouldn't be Chrome EDGE from M$. China  has the very  advantages they do and they use them too.

 

 

A ban of TIKTOC  , Huawei  etc breaks up Tech companies sharing  with each other  ideas and money . It is incentive for China to become tech independent  and in the process  they will surpass  the US in a few years.

 

Huawei phones never  was sold in the USA in stores  or by carriers only you could  buy unlocked ones online . What happen was when  Huawei announced  they was going to start selling them state side and  they got banned.

https://www.androidauthority.com/huawei-confirms-phones-will-sold-us-wireless-carriers-2018-824304/

 

It dont have nothing  to do with national security if it  does , why do they sell One track phones and Lenvo PCs in the USA?   if  that was the case . 

 

Fact is China dont need to  sell software or phones to hack the USA  they  easier ways they  find plenty of backdoors in existing USA based  software  .If that software  would be open source  the back doors would get closed faster. I posted a article the other day were China  state hackers are exploiting USA based  VPN Software and Microsoft Exchange because people are to stupid to do updates . Same reason wantacry infected all them people   because they never update.

 

What good does it do to get rid of the China supply chain  when the USA supply chain is vulnerable ? If you dont want get to hacked go back to using paper .:dance:

 

The federal government security is so shitty they  dont even need 0 days  to hack them let alone make special Chinese software  to do it.

 

What do F5, Citrix, Pulse Secure all have in common? China exploiting their flaws to hack govt, biz – Feds

https://www.theregister.com/2020/09/14/chinas_hackers_f5_citrix/

 

How many exploits  have Java had over the years  I know I  got infected  by a  Java Virus back in the early 2000s before  that back when websites still used it,  so hows it any safer with Oracle ? :doh:

 

If Google  thought  they was any danger  of hacks  you think they would host TikToc i doubt it.?  Google  is one  of the few  that took a stand against China for being  hacked . In fact  when Google came forward  in 2010  they was 35 companies was hacked and only Google  would  come forward  in public about it. The rest  of  the companies want admit  to China hacking them because  they got  too much money invested in China  to get ban like Google did .   Tech has been protecting China  stealing for years for the sake of  profit so they just as much as fault as China for not reporting  cyber crimes when they happen.  That fact is most China theft was not done trough  China supply chain but trough the USA supply  chain  .

 

As China Hacked, U.S. Businesses Turned A Blind Eye

https://www.npr.org/2019/04/12/711779130/as-china-hacked-u-s-businesses-turned-a-blind-eye

 

No wonder many  people dont thank China hacks anyone because there victims protect them

 

An investigation by NPR and the PBS television show Frontline into why three successive administrations failed to stop cyberhacking from China found an unlikely obstacle for the government — the victims themselves.

 

In dozens of interviews with U.S. government and business representatives, officials involved in commerce with China said hacking and theft were an open secret for almost two decades, allowed to quietly continue because U.S. companies had too much money at stake to make waves.

 

So there  is no real proof because the crimes go unreported  and this among other stuff like trade wars is the only way they know how to punish them for it .

 

Edited by steven36

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