Everything Parents Need to Know About TikTok and How to Keep Children Safe
What is TikTok?
TikTok is an app that has skyrocketed in popularity in recent time. It joins the ranks of Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram by becoming a vastly popular app where teens and young adults can show off their skills and build a following. TikTok is very similar to other apps out there, but it puts more of an emphasis on seeing rather than reading. The goal of TikTok is for users to lip sing to previously recorded songs or scenes. While doing this, they need to do something that will make them stand out from the crowd and get more likes and followers. Many people dance, wear costumes, try humor, and make grand gestures in order to get noticed.
Why is TikTok so Popular?
TikTok is so popular because it’s something different than all the other social media apps that are already out there. With apps like Facebook and Twitter, people share their thoughts and feelings in statuses. It puts a heavy emphasis on sharing how your day is going through words. TikTok is all about pictures and videos. The goal is to make yourself seen. TikTok gives users the option to record shot clips of them and their friends. Users essentially want to share something that they think will make them go viral. They want to overcome the algorithm and get noticed. In order to do that, many people record videos in parts so that people have to keep coming back. If someone likes a video, they give it a heart on TikTok. They also have the option to follow the original poster on TikTok or on their other social media pages. Many people have even gotten famous off of TikTok by gathering millions of followers due to their singing, dancing, or athletic talents.
There have been several safety concerns that have arisen regarding the app. TikTok only requires users to be 13 to create an account. This should be concerning to the family of a young teen. That’s because you never know who may be looking at your teen’s videos. TikTok doesn’t have the same privacy measures in place as other apps like Facebook or Twitter. Anyone can see the profile of someone else on the app.
TikTok also puts a heavy emphasis on acting sexy to get noticed. Many young people on TikTok are dancing provocatively because they want to get noticed and build a following. In order to do that, they may do things that show off their body. You never know who may take a screenshot or picture of someone’s video. There’s no way to stop someone from doing that.
TikTok can also have an effect on the impressionable minds of young users. They can be obsessed with the app because they want to continually achieve popularity and get noticed. Many competitions and rivalries can break out at school or among friends in order to see who can make the best TikTok. This can be very unhealthy for someone’s mental health.
What do Parents Need to Know?
TikTok is an app used by a wide range of users. It’s something that needs to be very closely monitored by parents in order to keep their children safe. Users of TikTok can be broken down into two separate categories. There are those who make videos and those who are watching videos. If your child is going to be on the app, you need to monitor what they’re doing in order to keep them safe.
How Can Parents Keep Their Kids Safe
Parents need to impose rules if their child is going to be on TikTok. They need to monitor who their kids are following to make sure that they are looking at age-appropriate content. If your child is going to post something, you need to check it first in order to ensure that they’re not posting anything too risky or flashy. You can’t really tell exactly who is looking at what your children post and therefore it’s better to be safe than sorry.
When kids are making these videos, they sometimes go to extreme ends to get noticed. They do stunts, they go to crazy locations, and they sneak out at night in order to find the one video that will get them noticed. Parents need to keep an eye on where their kids are going in order to ensure that they are staying safe.
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Finally, you need to make sure that your child isn’t posting anything that could be harmful to someone else. Many people on TikTok post videos that call out their friends or make fun of other people. This can be seen as cyber bullying and might get your child in trouble at school or it could grow into an even bigger problem.
Conclusion: Monitoring the Monkey-See Monkey-Do Attitude on TikTok
This app focuses heavily on “monkey see, monkey do.” When someone posts a video and goes viral, others try and copycat that. That’s the purpose of the app. It’s to see who can one-up the person who posted before them. When young teens fall into this mentality, it can be harmful. That’s because they’ll keep trying to make more and more videos to gain more clout. It can turn into obsessive behavior. If parents set ground rules, it can help to keep everyone safe.
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