Teresa Sanchez Rico
Is TikTok safe for kids?
If you’re the parent of a child, we are sure you’ve heard about the popular social media app TikTok, a video-sharing platform where users can watch, create, and share self-made videos on cell phones.
According to SocialMediaToday, TikTok is set to surpass 1.5 billion active users in 2022, pulling way ahead of Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, and YouTube.
While the app can be a source of creativity and fun for users, many parents are worried about the negative aspects that this app can have on their children, so here are some highlights parents need to know about TikTok:
The privacy settings have been updated for younger users. Previously, all TikTok accounts defaulted to a “public” setting no matter the age of the user, leaving your child open to DM’s and interactions from strangers. With its new update, TikTok accounts for users aged 13-15 will be private by default. Also, videos created by users under 16 years of age are restricted by default for download unless the settings are changed.
The minimum age for a TikTok user is 13 years old. While this is great news for younger users, it’s important to note that TikTok doesn’t use any age verification tools when new users sign up. That means, your child can sign up for a new account without your knowledge.
With a great feature called “Family Pairing”, parents can link their child’s account to their own where they can control direct messages, set screen time limits, and turn on/off restricted content directly from their phone. Parents can also receive a notification if any of the settings are changed or turned off from their child’s phone.
While TikTok is great for socializing and can provide a creative mindset for your child, it can also have some harmful effects. Like with any social media platform, posting videos and pictures regularly leave your kids open to negative reactions and harsh comments.
This can have a huge impact on your child’s self-esteem, body image, and confidence. To avoid this, it is very important to have an open conversation with our children about the positive use of social media and responsible use of the internet.
If you are interested in knowing more about this social network and how to talk with your kids about it, check out the following guide on TikTok: