TikTok and pornography: How to protect your children?
TikTok is without a doubt one of the most popular social media platforms among young people, especially Generation Z and Generation Alpha. However, keeping in mind teenagers and children, the question arises about TikTok and pornography: How to protect your children?
Even though TikTok has security and privacy policies in place to protect users, including age restrictions, content filters, and reporting options, there is still a lot of inappropriate content available on the platform.
To ensure their children’s safety on TikTok, it’s important for parents to be aware of the risks and take preventive measures. This includes monitoring children’s use of TikTok, establishing clear rules for using the platform, talking openly with them about the risks associated with using social media and even teaching them how to block profiles on this platform it is these tips that we are going to talk about.
Note: If you want to protect your children, a good way to do it is to use apps that monitor their cell phones. We recommend that you check out our article on parental control apps.
TikTok and pornography: Hashtags that can give access to this type of content
On social networks, it is common to see the creation, use, and distribution of different hashtags with the aim of promoting content, and initiatives, creating trends or increasing the number of followers. However, it is important to remember that these hashtags are not always harmless.
Regarding TikTok, for example, people are using the hashtags #orangeyoutube and #blueyoutube, language codes that allow anyone, regardless of age, to access and share this type of pornographic content. Although they may seem harmless, these hashtags refer to major pornographic content sites such as Pornhub and XXNX.
But that is not all. At the end of December 2020, a video published on YouTube by the video maker “Le roi des rats” (The King of Rats) brought to light a worrying accusation: the TikTok algorithm would be favoring access to sexualized and illegal videos, including content that involve minors.
The video featured examples of suggestive dances and poses, as well as simulations of sexual practices that frequently appeared on the platform. In addition, the video maker showed how easy it was to have access to illegal content, such as zoophilia and scatophilia, at any age.
With this, we see the importance of monitoring the content your child watches in the application and now you will learn how to do this task in the best way so that your child has access to appropriate and safe content.
How to Control What Kids Watch on TikTok?
There are several steps parents can take to monitor and limit their children’s access to any harmful videos. From using content filters and privacy settings to using parental control apps, there are several options available to help parents keep their kids safe while they use TikTok.
The first thing to do is link your minor child’s account to yours. To do so, just follow the steps below:
Log into your TikTok profile and click on the three dashes:
Then go to “Settings and Privacy“:
Scroll down and click on “Family Pairing“:
Click on “Continue”:
Choose the “Parent” option:
Click “Next” and the following screen will appear:
Take your child’s cell phone, and follow the previous steps, but instead of clicking on “Parent“, click on “Teen“. Then, click “Scan code” and scan the code on the parent’s phone, click “Link accounts“, and then click on “Link“:
After that, the screen below will appear and you will click on the name of the account linked to yours.
The next step is to decide what you will track, such as daily screen time and restricted mode.
In restricted mode, you can limit the content that may be inappropriate for your teen. Also, if this mode is activated, your child will not be able to log out or switch accounts.
You can also set who can message your teen. Go to “Privacy and safety” and then choose the option that best suits protecting your children.
As it was clear, to be able to carry out these steps, you need to have a TikTok account.
It is important to note that your child must be at least 13 years old to use TikTok, according to the rules of the application. Although many people try to circumvent this system, it is very important that the true date of birth is entered when registering for TikTok, as the application does not allow people between 13 and 15 years old to use certain features on the platform, such as performing Lives, for example.
Another important fact is that on TikTok you need to be at least 16 years old to do things like send or receive direct messages and allow other people to download and use the “Sew” and “Duet” tools in videos.
- Also check: How the TikTok algorithm works!
TikTok and pornography: How to protect your kids
Although following the rules above is of great help, it is worth noting that malicious people end up finding ways to circumvent the TikTok system. You can notify the platform that, even after activating restricted mode, inappropriate content appeared on your child’s screen. However, there are other ways to protect the teenager and one of them is through parental control apps.
Qustodio allows parents to monitor their children’s activity on TikTok and other apps and websites. In addition, the app features content filtering and screen time limitation. By being able to monitor your children’s online activity, you can identify any worrisome behavior and take appropriate action.
However, it should be noted that this app is not 100% perfect. Firstly, Qustodio is not free and the premium versions can be expensive. It can also happen that in some cases it accidentally blocks legitimate websites. Another limitation is that the application only works on mobile devices and cannot be used on other devices, such as computers or game consoles.
Another application well used by parents who want to protect their children’s integrity on TikTok is MSpy. This parental control app allows real-time monitoring, including calls, text messages, instant messages, social media activity, web browsing history, and even device GPS location.
On the side of the disadvantages, we can mention a critical factor, which is the app having technical problems, such as delays in updating information and connection difficulties. Therefore, it cannot guarantee that children are 100% safe online.
Rounding out our list is Eyezy. In addition to being an application, it offers parents a number of features to help them monitor and control their children’s internet access. These features can be summarized in navigation control, screen time control, activity alert, location, and study mode.
However, Eyezy may fail to show the typed words in full, which can make it difficult to interpret what was typed. Also, the app doesn’t have a test option for you to check if you like its service or not. That is, you have to pay to experience how Eyezy works.
For more TikTok parental control tips, read this article that will show you more ways to protect your teen.
Talk to your children
If you’re concerned about how to protect your child from pornography (and other things) on TikTok, it’s important to have an open and honest conversation about the risks and dangers of the platform. Explain to them that there are people with bad intentions and that it is necessary to be careful with the content that is accessed.
Also, being involved in your child’s life can help protect them from inappropriate content. Show interest in what they’re watching on TikTok, which creators they follow, and the hashtags they use. This can help you better understand your child’s tastes and behaviors on the platform.
A tip to start this conversation is to check out the most popular TikTok accounts, as some of them are likely to be of interest to your child. To help you with this task, we can recommend a complete article with the 20 biggest TikTok celebrities, which can serve as a useful reference for you to begin to understand the platform and the tastes of the teenager.
Always be aware and remember that the app has artificial intelligence to select the content that best suits the user’s preferences. Using data such as the teenager’s interactions on the network.
In this sense, it analyzes the likes on videos, the viewing time of each content, and even how quickly a video is skipped by your child. In this way, TikTok’s algorithms are able to quickly understand each person’s preferences and thus offer similar content that is unlikely to be disliked, proving the importance of knowing more about the videos that teenagers like.
Finally, teaching them about online safety practices, such as not sharing personal information with strangers and not accepting friend requests from people they don’t know, can also be of great help in this process.
Now that you know all these tips, how about getting to know a little more about this high-growth platform? See now the 25 curiosities about TikTok.
Teenagers and the risk of exposure to pornography
Even after a frank conversation with your child, it may be necessary to talk about how access to TikTok and how pornography can be harmful to your mental health, especially to the self-esteem of teenagers who compare themselves to actors in adult content.
In addition, pornography consumption can lead to a change in the perception of sexuality, something very problematic for a person who is discovering themselves or who shouldn’t even think about it yet.
Pornography can also present teenagers with a distorted view of sexuality. After all, often the sexual relations depicted are devoid of intimacy and affection. This view can lead your children to expect their sexual experiences to be similar to what they’ve seen in pornographic videos, which can hinder their ability to form healthy, satisfying relationships.
Another dangerous possibility is also the fact that many abusers access this type of content on platforms that teenagers have easy access to, such as TikTok. Therefore, they can get in touch with their child, even pretending to be a person their age, and convince them to do things, such as sending photos or recording videos imitating what was seen.
Talk to your child to be cautious when adding friends on TikTok. In this way, they should only accept requests from people they knows personally and even remove unwanted followers or block unknown users.
For these reasons, it is important that you clearly expose all these problems to be able to protect your child even more from this toxic exposure, capable of hindering the development of the teenager.
When talking openly with your child, they will feel free to talk to you about their experiences on TikTok and report any pornography and other inappropriate content they encounter. But if somehow you think that the solution is to disable the teenager’s TikTok, at least for a while, clicking here you have the step-by-step for that.
A life outside of TikTok
The search for engagement or the pleasure of watching short videos can be too tempting to make teenagers move away from screens. However, show your child that life is not just that. That they can go out to see new places with you, call their friends for a sleepover, and even enjoy a bit of nature in that park they stopped going to a long time ago.
Set an example for your teen. Create fun family activities and get off the screen for a bit too. You can encourage activities like sports, hobbies, music, or reading. Help your child find other ways to spend time and discover new passions.
On rainy days or when there is little money to leave the house, there is no problem using the internet. However, try to do this outside of social media and show the importance of family activities. To help you, we suggest getting distracted by the best games to play with the family or shows to watch so everyone at home can do that marathon together.