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TikTok now lets parents control how much time their kids spend on the app

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  • TikTok introduced a new tool for parents to control their kids’ time on the app on Wednesday.
  • The new “Family Safety Mode” allows parents to set screen time limits, control who the child can message, and restrict access to “inappropriate” content.
  • The feature is currently only available in the UK, but TikTok says it will roll it out to other markets in the coming weeks.
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TikTok, the video-sharing app favored by Generation Z, is getting some parental controls.

The company announced on Wednesday it’s introducing a suite of features under a new “Family Safety Mode.” To enable this mode, a parent has to link their own TikTok account to their child’s.

To do this both accounts have to switch on Family Safety Mode and identify whether they are “parent” or “teen.” The teen then scans a QR code from the parent’s phone screen, and has to consent to being linked. TikTok’s terms of service stipulate that users must be 13 years old or older.

Once linked the parent can control:

  • Screen time: the parent can set a limit on how much time the teen is allowed to spend on the app, ranging from 40 to 120 minutes.
  • Messaging: the parent can make it so the teen can only message friends, or turn off direct messaging entirely.
  • Restricted mode: the parent can block content which “may not be appropriate for all audiences.” TikTok does not specify exactly what content this entails but says in its app that if a parent finds an inappropriate video inside restricted mode, they can report it.

Family Safety Mode was rolled out in the UK on Wednesday, and the company says it plans to bring it to other markets in the next few weeks.

TikTok is follows other firms in introducing tools for parents to control their children’s screen consumption. Last year Apple introduced tools for parents to manage their children’s phone time — although some children found ingenious ways around it.

SEE ALSO: 7 tech executives who raise their kids tech-free or seriously limit their screen time

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