Who hasn’t heard or seen at least one Tik Tok video? We all have, haven’t we? Unless someone is living under a stone, everyone – from 5th graders, teens to adults – seem to be obsessed with Tik Tok nowadays. Considering the ease with which we can make entertaining, fun videos through this app, it seems to be the most favorite time-pass of one and all! It is so popular that it has blurred the lines between rural and urban areas. However, as parents of kids who are increasingly turning too tech-savvy for their age, being concerned about their safety online is a valid reason to worry about. Therefore, to address your concerns, we bring you here a guide to this fun app. Here goes:
What Is Tik Tok?
It is a social media app that allows users to connect with people and friends online, albeit in a fun way. And the most popular feature of Tik Tok is the option to create and share videos that can be done easily through the phone. This feature allows the users to lip-sync to their favorite songs or dialogues from Bollywood/Hollywood movies, and even create funny dance videos of themselves gyrating to popular songs. In the year 2018, it was merged with another similar app called Musical.ly and both were re-branded as Tik Tok. This app also became popular as a platform for people to show their talent to the world. In fact, quite a few Tik Tok users gained fame through this platform. No wonder then that the app already has nearly 100 million users and its popularity still seems to be growing.
How Does It Work?
Like all other apps, you’ll need to download it from either the Google Play Store or the Apple App Store. You’ll be required to sign up with details such as your email address, contact number, Facebook or Instagram. Once you sign up, you’ll find a range of topics to choose from like animals, comedy, sports, etc. You can use the contacts list on your phone to find your friends who are already on Tik Tok. Once you find them, click on the “Follow” button to connect with them. You’ll then be added to their contact list. If you are looking for specific popular video creators on Tik Tok, you can also search for their names to follow them.
Is It Safe For Kids?
Since this app is popular for its musical and video content, in all likelihood your child might get exposed to abusive or sexual content in such videos and songs. Being a social media app, Tik Tok also has a direct messaging (DM) feature which allows any random user to message your child directly. Thus, your child may be exposed to online predators. What makes it tricky is that from the moment you sign up, Tik Tok only gives you two kinds of settings – Private and Public. With the app being all about gaining popularity and fan-following, kids are often tempted to keep their profile public.
What Parents Can Do To Safeguard Their Kids?
With its popularity growing by leaps and bounds, we hope that Tik Tok comes up with more privacy features. Until then, it is advisable that you keep your Tik Tok profile private and share videos only with close friends and families. However, despite all the privacy features, it is important to consistently monitor what your kids does online, including the songs he/she hears or the videos that are viewed. With growing instances of deadly games and predators online, it is important for you to talk to your kids on a regular basis about these threats. For younger children, try to be by their side each time they access the app.
We hope that these pointers about the safe use of Tik Tok prove helpful to you. The internet is a great platform to learn and entertain oneself. However, to keep your kids from coming in harm’s way, teach them to use it wisely and it can prove to be your child’s best friend. And while you are at it, you too can join in the fun and make some quirky videos with your child too! Cheerios!