There are an increasing number of children in school who use the ‘TikTok’ app outside of school. This guidance for parents has been passed on to us today so we wanted to make you aware of it too. We hope that it is useful. The advice comes from the eAware website which has lots of other information for parents too.
Is TikTok Safe for Kids?
With over 500 million users It’s time to familiarise yourself with TikTok.
Originally called Music.ly, TikTok, is a free social network for sharing user-generated videos, mostly of people lip-syncing to popular songs. Users can also browse and interact with other users’ content including commenting and sending private messages.
| Things to consider|
With more than 500 million users, Tik Tok is incredibly popular with young people and whilst the minimum age requirement is 13 there are examples of many young people below this age using the app.
There have been reports of predators using the app to target young users.
Many young people enjoy ‘going live’ which is when they do a live broadcast of what they are currently doing. There is no way to vet this content meaning users may accidentally view something they did not intend to or post something which they can no longer undo.
Users are given a public profile by default meaning anyone can view their account and message them.
| Our advice for Young People|
Make your TikTok account private by default your account is public meaning anyone can see it and the things you post.
Change who can send you comments and direct messages to only friends.
Think carefully about the videos you post online.
Remember that when live streaming you have no way to delete your videos and people could be recording these.
Don’t respond to requests from people you don’t know.
If you see or experience something that bothers you then talk to a trusted adult and report the content within the app.
| Our Advice for Parents|
Ensure your child has a private account – When you sign up for TikTok, your account is public by default, meaning anyone can see your videos, send you direct messages,
Encourage your child to use TikTok in communal spaces where you can monitor the content they are creating and viewing.
Explore the built-in Digital Wellbeing features.
Turn on Screen Time Management, which limits users to two hours on the app per day.
Turn on Restricted Mode, which blocks some content but, as this is not foolproof ensure your child knows what to do if they see content which upsets them.