TikTok has announced new parental control features to protect underage users from certain posts. In addition, users will be able to control which content is displayed in their personal feed.
TikTok once again discussed how the app can be tailored even more personally to its users. This resulted in two major adjustments, which the company praised in an official press release.
On the one hand, users will be able to exert even more influence on which posts appear in their personal feed. Secondly, the operators of the short video app are now paying more attention to the protection of minors.
Here’s how TikTok aims to improve youth protection
The diverse community spans generations from teens to grandparents, said Cormac Keenan, TikTok’s Head of Trust and Safety.
We take these diverse audiences into account by limiting features by age, reviewing content and supporting parental controls.
The social media platform is therefore upgrading its protection of minors in particular. This is because younger community members in particular have so far also had access to complex topics that are more interesting for a more adult audience.
The new system now classifies content according to thematic maturity. In the coming weeks, TikTok plans to roll out an initial version to prevent content with overtly more adult themes from reaching a younger audience under 18.
If we determine that a video contains adult or complex themes, such as fictional scenes that might be too scary or intense for a younger audience, a maturity level will be assigned to the video to prevent people under 18 from viewing it on TikTok.
Users can influence personal feed
It’s not just content for teens that TikTok has been concerned about. It also wants the rest of the community to have more of a say. Especially when it comes to which topics appear in each user’s personal feed.
A new tool allows users to tag videos with words or hashtags that they would rather ban from their home page. The system can automatically filter out the terms from the “For you” and “Follow me” feeds.
This allows users to influence the topics displayed according to their own preferences. They can also protect themselves from triggering viewing experiences.
TikTok is working on even more new updates
The new parental controls tools and more personalized feeds aren’t the first innovations the social media platform has made in this direction. As recently as April, the app tested the Dislike button, allowing users to reject comments and mark them as irrelevant or inappropriate.
Since German journalists revealed that TikTok was adding word filters to content that restricted users’ freedom of expression, the company has also been testing how it can tell if the system is “inadvertently recommending a limited selection of content to users.”
In the future, even more functions are to be added to provide the entire TikTok community with detailed filter options for content. But to avoid getting into hot water again afterwards, the social media service apologizes in advance.
“At the same time, we realize that what we’re aiming for is complex and we may make some mistakes.”
Well, let’s hope the mistakes are limited.