TikTok introduces parental control features to keep those pesky teens in check

"Family Safety Mode" is here. Just one catch: parents need to make an account to use it.

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It’s no secret that TikTok has struggled to control the overwhelming number of teenagers on its platform. In an effort to make the app a safer space for all, TikTok today announced a new parental control feature called “Family Safety Mode.”

TikTok named the feature as part of its “ongoing commitment to providing users with features and resources to have the best experience on TikTok.”

One catch: parents need an account — In order to enable Family Safety Mode, parents or guardians will need to create a TikTok account and link it to their child’s account. Seeing as most of TikTok’s users are of younger generations, it’s unlikely that parents already have the app downloaded. This could present a small hurdle for parents who aren’t well-versed in social media technology.

Complete oversight — Once Family Safety mode has been set up, parents do have quite extensive control over how their child’s linked account is able to use TikTok. Family Safety Mode allows parents to limit direct messages to certain users, control how long can be spent on the app each day, and restrict the feed to age-appropriate content.

Will this fix TikTok? — Not exactly. Parental controls can only be as helpful as the parents that opt to use them. TikTok will need to continue reckoning with its deeper issues if it wants to be sustainable into the future.

Family Safety Mode is available in the U.K. today and will be rolling out to the rest of the world in the next few weeks.