National investigations into TikTok and its potential negative impacts on teenage users’ mental health have been begun by state attorneys general throughout the country, increasing official scrutiny of the massively popular video-sharing network.
The TikTok app has been attacked by politicians and federal authorities in the United States, who point to behaviors and computer-driven marketing of material that they claim may jeopardize the overall health of current adolescents. Estimates suggest that the network has One billion monthly users and that it is particularly popular with teenagers and young kids.
Among the opinion of government authorities and child-safety campaigners, the algorithms that the app uses to push video material to users may encourage eating disorders or even suicide in younger audiences.
TikTok has said that it aims on providing users with age-appropriate content, emphasizing that certain capabilities, such as messaging, are not accessible to anyone under 18. The firm claims that it has put in place features, such as screen-time monitoring, to assist young people and their parents in controlling how long their children are spending on the application and what they view while doing so.
As a result of a court order from federal authorities ordering TikTok to report how its actions impact children and teens, the site revised its privacy policies for users under the age of 18.
Increasingly popular among consumers and parliamentarians of both political parties, TikTok has sparked outrage from state and federal agencies as well as consumer activists and legislators from either parties. Republicans have focused their attention on the company’s links to China in particular. TikTok is controlled by ByteDance, which is located in Beijing.
The President also encouraged Congress to strengthen safeguards for children’s privacy, particularly by prohibiting advertising directed specifically at them and by enacting legislation to reduce the promotion of material that promotes addiction.
The app’s detractors refer to incidences around the nation that surfaced last autumn in which kids destroyed school restrooms and other facilities and stole supplies – all in reaction to a popular TikTok challenge dubbed “devious licks,” according to the app’s detractors.
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