TikTok’s increasing popularity among teens and parents’ increasing concerns over what they’re doing on the platform has motivated the social media giant to make some changes. On April 30 in 2020, TikTok rolled out Family Pairing, a family safety mode that was running on TikTok in the United Kingdom since February 2020.
After linking their account to the child’s account in Family Pairing, parents are able to:
- Restrict inappropriate content
- Set screentime limits
- Decide who can send direct messages to their kids
Plus, if a child is under 16, TikTok will automatically block anyone from DMing them.
“The safety and well-being of our users is a top priority at TikTok,” a spokesperson told Parentology in response to a recent article about teens allegedly getting high from consuming large quantities of nutmeg during the Nutmeg Challenge. “As we make clear in our Community Guidelines, we do not allow content that encourages, promotes, or glorifies dangerous challenges that might lead to injury, and we remove reported behavior or activity that violates our guidelines. To help keep our platform safe, we have introduced a slate of safety features geared towards enhancing our users’ experience, including tools for reporting inappropriate content and managing privacy settings.”
TikTok’s Family Pairing mode was the next phase of the company’s plans to help parents navigate the ever-changing world of social media. The company teamed up with the National PTA, National Center for Missing & Exploited Children, ConnectSafely, and Family Online Safety Institute for input. And while these changes can’t guarantee kids and teens won’t do stupid or dangerous challenges on the platform, it can help parents keep an eye on things.
Activating TikTok Family Pairing
TikTok created the graphic below to illustrate how Family Pairing is done. Parents need to have their own TikTok account, so if you don’t have one, download the app onto your phone and create one. It’s super fast and easy.
Scanning a QR code from one phone to the other will link the accounts, and from there, parents will be able to set the restrictions.
TikTok Family Pairing — Sources
TikTok press release