TikTok will force some people to spend less time on the app

TikTok Gives Parents the Option to Limit, Filter Screen Time

Everyone, including TikTok, knows how addictive the short-form video content social media app is.

So in an effort to prevent minors from spending all their time on it, TikTok announced a new feature that will set a 60 minutes time limit for users under 18 years old.

“In the coming weeks, every account belonging to a user below age 18 will automatically be set to a 60-minute daily screen time limit,” Cormac Keenan, TikTok’s head of trust and safety said in a blog post.

After 60 minutes, people aged 14-18 will have to enter a passcode to keep watching, “requiring them to make an active decision to extend that time.”

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For people under 13 years old, a parent or guardian will have to enter a passcode to extend the time for another 30 minutes.

The new feature is part of TikTok’s larger effort to help kids use social media safely and intentionally. Two years ago, the app made every account belonging to a person aged 13-15 years old private.

In recent months, TikTok and other social media giants have come under scrutiny from lawmakers and parents for enabling unhealthy behavior and addiction to social media in children.

TikTok acknowledged there is no “right” amount of screen time but consulted with research experts from Boston Children’s Hospital to choose the limit.

They also cited research that “shows that being more aware of how we spend our time can help us be more intentional about the decisions we make.”

For teenagers who opt out of the 60-minute default screen time and spend more than 100 minutes on TikTok per day, the app will send weekly screen time recaps to encourage them to set limits.

Although it seems a loophole for kids on the app will be to set the passcode themselves or lie about their age.

The move comes shortly after Meta announced they would be rolling out a new privacy and security feature aimed at minors who have explicit photos posted to social media.

TikTok has recently come under fire in the US, UK, and other countries for its lack of privacy and security.

Several US states and the federal government have imposed rules that prevent any government official from downloading the social media app on government-issued phones.

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