TikTok Now Warns Minors to Stop Scrolling After an Hour

Users can bypass the time limit by inputting a code, which will hopefully make young people reconsider their screen time.

TikTok just announced that it would set a default time limit of 60 minutes per day for users under 18 years old in an effort to curb the mental health crisis among its younger userbase.

There's no denying that TikTok has seen its fair share of controversy in recent years. From the government bans to its questionable trends, the social media platform seems to never leave the news cycle for very long.

Now, TikTok is hoping to quell the storm of criticism by curbing the addictive behaviors of teens that perhaps use the app a little too much.

TikTok Announces Default Time Limit for Teens

Announced in a press release this week, TikTok announced new features aimed at making the app a better place for teen users, including new default screen time limits and screen time reports.

“We believe digital experiences should bring joy and play a positive role in how people express themselves, discover ideas, and connect.” – Cormac Keenan, Head of Trust and Safety at TikTok

These new time restrictions are not set in stone, though, as teen users will be able to input a passcode to bypass the 60-minute limit. This will still curb usage, claims Keenan, as users will be forced “to make an active decision to extend that time.”

Additionally, if teen users deactivate the 60-minute time limit and use the app for more than 100 minutes per day, the TikTok app will prompt them with a notification to set a time limit, displaying a breakdown of screen time to further illustrate the value of time off of TikTok.

Is TikTok Addictive?

There have been plenty of studies done on the addictive nature of social media, with experts explaining that the scrolling on social media isn't entirely dissimilar to recreational drug usage as far as brain chemistry is concerned.

“When you’re scrolling… sometimes you see a photo or something that’s delightful and it catches your attention. And you get that little dopamine hit in the brain… in the pleasure center of the brain. So, you want to keep scrolling.” – Dr Julia Albright, Digital Sociologist and Lecturer at USC

There's also more than enough data to show that social media and TikTok have a negative effect on mental health, particularly for young people. Even the American Psychological Association published a report stating that reduction of social media usage could improve the esteem of emotionally distressed minors.

So, at least TikTok is taking steps to quell this kind of usage, but bigger leaps may be needed to solve the problem.

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Written by:
Conor is the Lead Writer for Tech.co. For the last six years, he’s covered everything from tech news and product reviews to digital marketing trends and business tech innovations. He's written guest posts for the likes of Forbes, Chase, WeWork, and many others, covering tech trends, business resources, and everything in between. He's also participated in events for SXSW, Tech in Motion, and General Assembly, to name a few. He also cannot pronounce the word "colloquially" correctly. You can email Conor at conor@tech.co.
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