TikTok limits under-18s to 60 minutes of screen usage each day.
TikTok imposes a 60-minute daily screen time limit for those under 18. If adolescents exceed the new limit, they must submit a passcode to continue using the service that day.
According to Bbc TikTok, users can opt out of the new measure, which will be implemented “in the next weeks.”
The video app, owned by the Chinese company ByteDance, announced the addition of the option to assist users in “maintaining control” of their usage.
TikTok announced the new limit after introducing a reminder to urge teens to manage their screen usage last year. According to the report, this increased the use of our screen time tools by 234%.
Users of the platform must be at least 13 years old, and anyone under 18 will receive a weekly reminder with a “recap of their screen usage” as part of this new feature.
No “appropriate” screen time
After the adjustments, affected users will receive their new time limit passcode on an app screen.
TikTok will ask users who opt out of the new 60-minute limit but continue using the app for 100 minutes daily to set their own screen time limits.
Parents of children using the Family Pairing feature of the app will be able to set screen time limits and view a dashboard that provides an app usage analysis.
Cormac Keenan, head of trust and safety at TikTok, stated that the company collaborated with researchers to establish the new restrictions.
“While there is no consensus on the ‘correct’ amount of screen time or the effects of screen time in general, we examined current academic research and specialists from the Digital Wellbeing Lab at Boston Children’s Hospital to determine this restriction,” he explained.
Opponents of the video app applauded the screen time limit but labelled it as the “tip of the iceberg” regarding TikTok’s response to the platform’s exposure of young users.
“Crack cocaine of algorithmic systems”
Imran Ahmed is the executive director of the Center for Countering Digital Hate, which recently published a study demonstrating that TikTok’s algorithm “bombards” adolescents with dangerous content.
He stated, “TikTok has conquered the hearts and minds of 14- to 24-year-olds in the United States and the United Kingdom.”
“It is the crack cocaine of algorithmic programming. It is the most addictive, the most deadly, and the one that requires immediate attention.”
Mr Ahmed told the BBC that research conducted by his centre at the end of 2017 revealed that a 13-year-old girl’s TikTok stream had an eating disorder and self-harm content within minutes of starting an account.
He urged the platform to reduce screen time and “clean up” feeds of harmful content to make it a “healthy place for youngsters.”
That comes amid growing debate around TikTok’s ties with the Chinese government and the safeguarding of user data.
Last week, the Canadian government joined the United States in banning the application on government-owned devices.
TikTok announced in September 2021 that it had surpassed one billion active monthly users, making it one of the largest social networks in the world.
It does not publish a demographic breakdown of its members, but social media marketers and advertisers consider it a crucial medium for reaching individuals under 34.