TikTok — the social media app featuring user-generated 15-second videos — can be a confusing and scary platform for some parents. While on the surface it seems harmless with things like the Fleetwood Mac Trend, there are also reports of the deadly Blackout Game or racist George Floyd Challenge.
So, with that in mind, Cyberwise hosted a webinar that works as a parent’s guide to TikTok challenges and trends. Hosted by Cyber Civics educator Diana Graber, the event featured Dr. Pamela Rutledge, a Media Psychologist who offered insight into what draws young people to these challenges. It also included Parentology’s Editor-in-Chief, Rick Andreoli, who discussed some of the most popular, dangerous, silly, and offensive viral events that popped up on the platform over the last year.
Together, Graber and Rutledge help parents better understand what their kids are doing online, and offer tools parents can use so that their kids can become better digital citizens — both on TikTok and other social media platforms as well.
Watch it here.
Parent’s Guide to TikTok — Important Links
Here are some key articles we’ve featured on Parentology to help parents, many of which were mentioned in the webinar above.
New TikTok Parental Controls
Why do the new TikTok parental controls matter? Turns out, 41% of TikTok users are between 16 and 24, and possibly 1/3 of TikTok users are 14 and under — and these new features make the platform safer for them.
TikTok Family Pairing Feature
Introduced last year, this feature lets parents restrict inappropriate content, set screentime limits, and decide who can send direct messages to their kids.
Family-Friendly TikTok Challenges
A great way to connect with your kids and see what they’re doing online is to join them on TikTok. Try one of these family-friendly challenges or trends with your kids.
“I Had Pasta Tonight” – TikTok Teens Aren’t Talking About Dinner
With all the focus on dangerous TikTok trends, there are some that help. Here is one that kids use when feeling depressed or suicidal.
Most Dangerous, Idiotic, and Offensive TikTok Challenges
See what trouble your kids could be getting into on the platform.
Dr. Rutledge is part of The Media Psychology Research Center (MPRC). This is an independent organization dedicated to psychological science as the foundation of media and technology research, assessment, and education. Their mission is to promote the positive development and use of media and technology. You can also read her articles on her website, pamelarutledge.com.