This week, TikTok, which was previously suspended by the Indian government in June of last year, was banned permanently.
At the same time, YouTube reported that its TikTok clone, called Shorts, which the platform launched for testing in the Indian market two months after the Chinese competitor was suspended, has been approved and will grow.
“The videos for our shorts, which help people watch short videos on YouTube, get an impressive 3.5 billion views per day,” said Susan Wojcicki, CEO of the platform and one of the first. Google employees.
“We are looking forward to expanding Shorts to more markets this year,” he added. The idea is to take it to the American market, which has not yet decided to ban TikTok, as Donald Trump said, but justice has been banned.
More than a proving ground, Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s India has opened up to US platforms both as a consumer market and as a content provider.
Bollywood is already prioritizing streaming services from Amazon, Netflix and Disney for its films and series. The latter, moreover, owes much of the high number of Disney + launches to the subscribers it inherited, with the acquisition of the Indian Hotstar.
The rapprochement between the Prime Minister and the platforms was most striking with Facebook. Months ago, the Wall Street Journal revealed that India’s social media executive had favored Modi’s party for years, even allowing incitement to violence against Muslims.
As was the case under Trump, the Indian government is in Joe Biden’s plans for China’s economic and military containment effort – which was explained by his “Asian Czar” Kurt Campbell two weeks ago to Foreign Affairs:
“The United States should seek out bodies like the D10 proposed by the United Kingdom (G-7 plus Australia, India and South Korea) for urgent matters of trade, technology, supply chain. procurement and standards. Other coalitions can focus on military deterrence, expand the Quad comprised of Australia, India, Japan and the United States, and invest in infrastructure, through cooperation with Japan and the United States. India.
So much proximity ends up extending to political news as well. Last week, The New York Times video showed how Biden’s deputy, Kamala Harris, of a Hindu mother, is “celebrated in India” in her “ancestral village.”
Meanwhile, protests by Indian farmers, who are about to end six months and who have killed dozens, some by suicide, are receiving sporadic or blatantly negative international pro-Modi coverage.
The protests are led by Sikhs, one of the country’s religious minorities – and warnings are starting to emerge, at least in the Indian nongovernmental press, of an upsurge in ethnic strife on the way, allegedly spurred by the government press.
In an episode with the greatest potential for repercussions in the West, police forces linked to Modi’s party, BJP, launched formal complaints against editors and journalists who wrote about the large protest in the capital, New Delhi, last Tuesday (26), The Day of the Republic.
Newspapers like Hindu reported that the Indian Publishers Association protested, with some echo in the United States. “An attempt to intimidate, harass and suffocate the free media,” journalists questioned.
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