The popular video app TikTok has modified its privacy settings for all users below the age of 18. These changes will not only affect TikTok’s default privacy settings for minors but also some features. These are features such as what type of videos can be created by what age groups. Another feature that has been changed is the ability to download a video uploaded by a minor.
Tiktok has also partnered with Common Sense Networks to curate content that is age-appropriate for kids. This is expected to improve TikTok’s overall user experience for kids. This means there will be a limited version of TikTok that is designed for users below 13 years. However, for kids above 13 years, the changes made are specific to certain age groups.
Kids Aged 13-15
To start with, all accounts registered for kids between 13 and 15 years will be set automatically to “private” by default. I know parents who had to do this manually for their kids will very much welcome this change.
So what does it mean to have a private TikTok account?
It means that videos uploaded by your kid will be visible only to followers who are approved, and nobody else. The only way to override that is by toggling off the “private account” setting. TikTok believes that by giving a child this option, the kid will get to understand their digital footprint.
Another change that has been effected is restricting this age group from having “everyone” comment on their uploads. Kids aged 13 to 15 years can only choose between “Friends” and “No one” to comment on their videos. Additionally, all TikTok users below 16 can no longer post “Stitch” or “Duet” videos.
That’s because those videos are made using parts of a video from other users. Also, as you would expect, videos by kids under 16 cannot be downloaded by other users. TikTok has also disabled “Follow suggestions” of a kid’s account to other users unless the user enables it.
Kids Aged 16-17
For this age group, by default, creating “Stitch” and “Duet” videos are now set to just “Friends”. But it can also be switched to everyone. Now, when it comes to whether their videos can be downloaded, this age group is allowed to make the choice. However, that setting will be by default to the restrictions imposed on the 13-15 age group.
These changes by TikTok are in the wake of other recent attempts to enhance kids’ privacy within the app. Notable recent updates were forbidding kids below age 16 from hosting live streams as well as direct messaging. The ability to receive or send virtual gifts was also recently restricted to users above 18 years.