Filtering TikTok Content for Kids: A Parent’s Guide
TikTok has grown to be one of the most popular social media apps for teenagers. TikTok’s growing popularity among teens is becoming a concerning factor for parents as it can be difficult for parents to ensure their children only access appropriate content on TikTok.
Kids using TikTok unsupervised might lead to potential risks like cyberbullying, exposure to inappropriate content, addiction, etc. To ensure that your children are only exposed to appropriate and safe content, it’s crucial for parents to understand the numerous ways to filter TikTok content for kids.
In this article, we’ll look at some advice that parents can utilize to help their kids only see appropriate TikTok content, giving them a safer and more enjoyable experience overall.
Let’s jump right into it!
What is TikTok?
TikTok is a social network and short-form video app where people can create and upload videos. With the help of TikTok’s tools, filters, and special effects, users may blend their videos, music, and graphics to create their own music videos and creative shorts.
On TikTok, there is a wide range of topics, songs, and styles to browse and interact with. TikTok allows you to watch videos from public accounts worldwide on your TikTok For You page, which is curated uniquely for you.
TikTok’s FYP is likely selected based on the interests of your demographic and the details you provide, such as your age, gender, interests, etc. when you first sign up for TikTok. However, once you start using the app, you’ll see more of what you usually watch based on your behavior on TikTok.
Users’ interactions, video information, and device and account settings influence TikTok’s algorithm.
Thus, if your kids are on TikTok, it is crucial that you, as a parent, supervise them and monitor what kind of TikTok content they are watching. If not, there is a high risk of your kids being exposed to inappropriate TikTok content and users.
Risks and Concerns for Kids on TikTok
The potential risks and concerns associated with TikTok use for kids are:
- Inappropriate content and exposure to mature themes: Kids may encounter inappropriate or harmful content on TikTok, such as violence, sexual content, or hate speech, through TikTok feeds or receive direct messages, which can be distressing and potentially traumatizing.
- Cyberbullying and online harassment: Children may experience cyberbullying, harassment, and discrimination on TikTok, negatively impacting their mental health.
- Privacy concerns and potential for online predators: Kids may not properly understand people with good and bad intentions, so they might unintentionally send direct messages to strangers sharing their personal information or location on social media platforms. This may expose them to online predators, fraudsters, and identity thieves.
- Addiction and excessive screen time: For some kids, TikTok can be addictive, affecting their physical and mental health, including their sleep, activity levels, and academic performance.
Parental Controls and Filters on TikTok
There are many filters and parental controls, such as video keyword filters, setting a private account, Restricted Mode, Screen Time Limits, Family Pairing, and more, available on TikTok that can limit your kids’ exposure to potential risks on TikTok.
1. Restricted Mode
With Restricted Mode on TikTok, you can restrict exposure to content that may not be suitable for everyone, so if a kid is not suitable to view certain content, then TikTok will restrict such content from your kids’ TikTok feed.
On your child’s account, here’s how you can turn Restricted Mode on.
- Go to the TikTok app and tap on the profile icon.
- Then tap on the menu button at the upper right corner of your screen.
- Tap on the Settings and Privacy option.
- Go to Content Preferences> Select Restricted mode.
- Tap on the Turn on option.
- Finally, set a passcode to turn on or off restricted mode on TikTok.
2. Video Keyword Filters
TikTok’s video keyword filters let you curate the content in your For You and Following feeds by filtering specific keywords.
Here’s how you can include video keyword filters:
- Open TikTok and tap on the profile icon.
- At the upper right corner of your screen, tap on the menu icon.
- Tap on Settings and Privacy.
- Go to Content preferences, and tap Filter video keywords.
- Tap Add keyword.
- Then, type in the word or hashtag you want to filter, and select the section of the feed you want to filter from.
- Finally, Tap save at the top right corner of your screen.
3. Family Pairing
Using TikTok’s family pairing feature, parents can connect their kids’ accounts with their own so that they can manage their privacy and safety settings, set screen time limits for them, enable restricted mode, restrict direct messages, make their kid’s TikTok account private, and generally keep them safe while using the app.
Here’s how you can enable the family pairing mode on TikTok:
- Open TikTok and tap on the person icon at the bottom right corner.
- Tap on the menu button in the upper right corner.
- Go to Settings and Privacy, and tap Family Pairing.
- Choose Continue and choose Parent on the next page. Then tap on Next.
- You’ll then see a QR code.
- Now, log in to your kid’s TikTok account > Settings and privacy > Family Pairing > Teen.
- Finally, scan the Qr code to link your and your teen’s TikTok account.
4. Screen Time
Setting a screen time management for your kids on TikTok helps to manage the app usage that prevents your kids from TikTok addiction and other negative impacts on mental health.
The daily screen time feature on TikTok lets you set your own time limits and notifies you once you reach that time on TikTok.
To set daily screen time limits, you’ll need to do is:
- Log in to your kids’ TikTok account and click the profile icon.
- At the upper right corner of the screen, tap on the menu button.
- Tap on Settings and Privacy> Screen time.
- Tap Daily screen time and tap Turn on.
- Then set a passcode and turn on the daily screen time on your kid’s phone to manage the app usage. After exceeding the set time, you may enter the passcode to continue using TikTok further.
MobileSpy for Filtering TikTok Content
While the digital world offers many opportunities and benefits, it is also full of scammers and cyberbullies. Thus, installing the MobileSpy app with parental control, in addition to using TikTok’s parental controls, is a must for every parent. It helps to add an additional layer of security to your child’s internet usage and keeps them safe from inappropriate content on the TikTok app.
MobileSpy, the remote spying and control program, is an app to help users monitor and track their child’s phone usage of social media, multimedia, texts, calls, apps, internet data, and more.
You can use MobileSpy to spy on your kid’s every move in real-time on any iOS or Android smartphone. Also, it is simple to set up and run.
You can effortlessly monitor your kid’s TikTok activity using MobileSpy’s TikTok spy app. To install MobileSpy, all you need to do is visit the MobileSpy website and choose a subscription plan based on your requirements.
Then, you’ll receive an email with the complete installation guide for MobileSpy. On your child’s device, install the MobileSpy app, then carry out the next steps:
- Visit the MobileSpy website on your device.
- Use your valid login credentials to access your account.
- Choose the Social Media option from the sidebar of your dashboard.
- Finally, select TikTok.
This way, you can track the TikTok activities on your child’s account.
Other Ways for Monitoring and Managing Kids’ TikTok Use
Besides using parental control and monitoring software, there are some other things such as that helps to monitor and manage kids’ TikTok use.
- Set rules and expectations: Tell your child what you expect from them when they use TikTok, including how much time they can spend on the app and what kinds of content are appropriate.
- Educate your kids: Have a conversation with them about cyberbullying, hackers, and scammers, as well as the risks associated with sharing private information online.
- Have open communication: Encourage your kids to talk to you if they come across anything on TikTok that makes them feel unsafe or uncomfortable.
- Check for age-appropriate content: The content on TikTok is diverse, and some might not be suitable for kids. Check to see if the content your child is watching is suitable for their age.
- Teach to maintain balance: Teach your children the importance of striking a balance between using social media sites like TikTok and other activities such as exercising, socializing, and schoolwork.
Overall, TikTok can be a fun and creative platform for kids, but it also comes with its fair share of risks. Your child’s TikTok experience might be traumatizing if exposed to certain inappropriate themes and mature content, offensive comments, cyberbullying, online harassment, addiction, excessive screen time, etc., if not monitored by parents while on TikTok.
However, it is not possible for parents to stand by supervising their kids every time when it comes to ensuring their kids’ internet safety. Fortunately, this guide offers some great tips on how parents can filter TikTok content for kids and monitor their TikTok activity.
Parents may ensure that their kids are having fun on TikTok without being exposed to harmful content by enabling parental controls, adjusting privacy settings, and maintaining open communication with their kids.
So go ahead and adopt the measures you learned in this guide to ensure your children are safe on TikTok.