TikTok has announced that it is automatically putting a 60-minute time limit on accounts of users under the age of 18. While users can opt-out or set another time limit, it prompts teens’ to engage with these tools.
But why has the company made this decision and why is this feature a necessary move for TikTok?
Why Is TikTok Applying an Automatic Screen Time Limit for Teens?
TikTok’s feature will automatically set a 60-minute daily screen time limit for users under 18. Once the 60-minute limit is reached, teenagers will be prompted to enter a passcode to continue watching. With this feature, TikTok aims to help teens manage their screen time more effectively.
TikTok’s decision to introduce an automatic 60-minute screen time limit was influenced by academic research by the Digital Wellness Lab at Boston Children’s Hospital. In a Pulse Survey by the Digital Wellness Lab, findings suggested that adolescents view popular social media platforms in a way that is largely positive, but also admit that the use of these apps have interfered with their schoolwork, sleep, and the time they spend with friends and family.
Around half of the participants in the survey also admitted to the negative impact social media has on their school grades and how they feel about body image. It’s no secret that there’s a bad reputation regarding TikTok’s safety for kids. Due to pressure from critics, parents, and the concerned public, TikTok needs to continuously put measures in place to improve the digital well-being of teenagers and younger kids.
TikTok has placed an emphasis on encouraging teens to make conscious decisions about the time they spend on the app. If they want to, they can opt out of the time limit. But this feature makes it easier for teenagers to engage with TikTok’s screen time management tools, instead of having to look for these settings themselves.
Why TikTok’s Screen Time Limit Is a Good Move
TikTok’s new feature allows families to spark conversations on online safety and digital well-being. Through TikTok’s parental controls, parents can customize the daily screen time limit according to the day of the week.
In a survey commissioned by TikTok, the findings demonstrated that one of the concerns from parents is screen time. The survey also demonstrated that many parents have a hard time initiating conversations about digital safety and online wellness, and only have these conversations when their teens come across a problem online or when there’s a change in their behavior.
Through the screen time limit feature, TikTok aims to give parents the opportunity to have consistent conversations about online safety. This feature will allow more parents to use the app’s safety tools. That way, parents can feel confident in initiating conversations about the online experiences of their teens. Not only will this help parents spark conversation with their teens about digital safety, but the screen time limit prompt also allows teens to learn to be safe and responsible online.
TikTok is also bringing in a new setting that lets parents mute notifications for their teens, allowing them to avoid distractions at certain hours of the day. TikTok’s new feature gives parents the chance to be at ease knowing that their kids can be less vulnerable to the potential dangers of TikTok, and that they can be more involved in the digital lives of their children.
Keeping Your Kids Safe on TikTok
It’s clear that TikTok is feeling the heat regarding public concerns about the safety of teenagers on the app. Now, teenagers can make more active decisions regarding their online activity. Additionally, parents can be more involved in ensuring their kids are safe and can assist their kids in building healthy habits online.