TikTok a social media app that gives users the opportunity to share 60 second short videos with friends, family or the entire world. Like Twitter-owned Vine and Musical.ly before it, videos shared range from funny sketches to lip-sync videos featuring special effects. Currently, the app is available in 75 languages and has over 1 billion active user. Like Musical.ly before it, it is most popular with under 16s. It was the most downloaded app of 2019, however there is some controversy over access to age appropriate material and a format which may tempt younger users to take risks in order to get more of a following or likes on a video.
When the app is downloaded, users are able to see all the site’s content without creating an account, although they are not able to post, like or share anything until they’ve set up an account on the app. By default, all accounts are public so anyone on the app can see what your child shares, however, only approved followers can send them messages. Users can like or react to a video, follow an account or send messages to each other. There is the risk that strangers will be able to directly contact children on the app and concerns have been raised recently regarding the content of some videos, involving drug use. To delete an account you have to request a code from the app using a phone number.
For more information on TikTok, visit https://www.internetmatters.org/hub/esafety-news/tik-tok-app-safety-what-parents-need-to-know/