‘Safeguarding the teen experience’: TikTok to filter out mature videos with new tool

Videos will be ranked with a maturity score and age protected

TikTok app page. (WDIV)

SAN ANTONIO – TikTok has announced a new user viewing preference that will filter out content with “overtly mature themes” for teenagers between 13 to 17 years old.

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Announced Wednesday, TikTok introduced the new safety feature that will safeguard “the teen experience.”

The platform known for its “For You Feed” tailored to viewers’ passions and interests, created the safety feature in an effort to prevent negative mental health effects of social media.

Cormac Keenan, TikTok Head of Trust and Safety, said the new system is important for the teenage viewing experience.

“A series of similar content on topics... may be fine as a single video but potentially problematic if viewed repeatedly,” Keenan said.

Keenan listed topics related to dieting, extreme fitness, and sadness as examples of such content.

Keenan also addressed additional viewer hazards of the social media platform, including the potential of seeing content that may contain mature or complex themes that could reflect personal experiences or real-world events that are intended for older audiences.

TikTok will introduce the new system in the coming weeks.

The early version of the app will feature a tool that will detect when a video contains mature or complex themes.

A maturity score will be allocated to videos, helping prevent those under 18 from viewing such content.

If detected, viewer will be prompted to a post unavailable screen.

TikTok mature video block. (TikTok)

The company also acknowledged the complexity of striving to improve long-running industry-wide challenges. As they may make mistakes, TikTok reassures that the company’s focus will remain on creating the safest and most enjoyable experience for the community.

About the Author:

Victoria Lopez is a Digital Journalist at KSAT. Before joining the team in July 2022, she worked as a Digital Reporter at CBS 4 Rio Grande Valley and Local 23 News. Victoria graduated with a degree in Mass Communications — Public Relations from the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley.