TikTok and its parent ByteDance sued rival Triller, asking a U.S. judge to clear up a “cloud” over the China-based popular video-streaming app after Triller accused it of stealing technology.
ByteDance is in talks to sell parts of its TikTok unit in a deal that could be worth tens of billions of dollars after President Donald Trump moved to ban its U.S. operations over national security concerns.
The case filed Wednesday in San Francisco federal court is a response to a patent-infringement suit Triller filed against ByteDance in late July in Waco, Texas, a hub for complaints by patent owners looking for a friendly judge and quick litigation.
Triller CEO Mike Lu fired back, saying “we may be small, but we have right on our side.”
“TikTok and its parent company, ByteDance, have been infringing on Triller’s patents and stealing its technology for many years—enriching themselves and their investors at Triller’s expense,” he said in an emailed statement. “This is nothing more than a transparent attempt by a Chinese conglomerate with tens of thousands employees to manipulate the U.S. legal system by not responding to Triller’s complaint or answering for their violations.”
TikTok didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.