‘A new Internet’: Billionaire makes pitch to buy TikTok, enhance online data protections

Jun 6 COX media group Samantha manning

United by shared grief, a group of parents from around the country who say their children died from social media harms traveled to Washington, D.C. on Thursday to meet with an American billionaire interested in buying the popular app TikTok.

Frank McCourt started the initiative Project Liberty with the goal of creating a safer space online. It’s now working to put together a group of bidders to purchase TikTok from Chinese-owned ByteDance.

Our Washington News Bureau was present during a breakfast meeting with McCourt and his team and the grieving parents.

“It was hard enough to raise children before the internet. It is nearly impossible now,” McCourt said.

Sam Chapman was one of the parents who took part in the discussion. His 16-year-old son Sammy died from a fentanyl-laced pill he got through Snapchat.

“Right now, our data is being used by these large companies to drive nefarious actors to our children, even to adults,” said Chapman. “We’re not willing to put up with doing nothing.”

Read the full piece on Boston 25 News or find it across the Cox Media Group network.

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