I admit that I love checking into TikTok – the social media platform that shares totally random short video clips. Aside from following a few roller skating queens, corgis, and my niece, I’ve also smiled and LOL’d at random happy dance challenges. Yes, there is idiotic shit on there as well but hey, my algorithms are thankfully not feeding me crap I’m not interested in seeing. But ever wonder what your kids are seeing? There is a significant update happening on TikTok that parents may be interested in learning about.

In efforts to support families using the site, TikTok has announced Family Pairing that allows a parent to link their TikTok to their teen’s and when enabled, gives parents greater oversight. In addition, more tools have been added to help customize the right TikTok experience for families.

This is handy especially when you have a younger teen that is just starting an account. TikTok can be fun in these stressful times (okay, I admit to being totally sucked in at times) but having some guidelines are helpful.

By using Family Pairing, parents can help guide their teen’s experience with the following helpful controls:

  • Search [NEW]: Decide whether your teen can search for content, users, hashtags, or sounds
  • Screen Time Management: Set how long your teen can spend on TikTok each day
  • Restricted Mode: Limit content that may not be appropriate for a general audience in your teen’s For You feed
  • Comments [NEW]: Decide who can comment on your teen’s videos (everyone, friends, no one)
  • Discoverability [NEW]: Decide whether your teen’s account is private (your teen decides who can see their content) or public (anyone can search and view content)
  • Liked Videos [NEW]: Decide who can see the list of videos your teen has liked. Many people enjoy watching videos that others they follow have also enjoyed, so this feature empowers families to decide whether others can see those “liked” videos
  • Direct Messages: Restrict who can send messages to your teen, or turn off direct messaging completely. With user safety in mind, we also have many policies and controls in place for messaging. For example, direct messaging is automatically disabled for those under 16, only approved followers can message each other, and images and videos cannot be sent in messages.

In addition to these tools for families, TikTok has also recently added more guidelines and resources to support body positivity within the community as well as removing harmful content like hateful ideologies.   TikTok has also developed global partnerships to protect against child exploitation.

If you’re interested in learning more you can visit the TikTok Parents Page and the Youth Portal.