How to Help Your Teen Become a Responsible Digital Native

For most teenagers, their social media debut is the first exposure to the world outside. Therefore just like it is important to prep them for their first day of college, in today’s digital age, teenagers need to be prepped for social media activity as well.

TikTok, the short video sharing app, is the trend of the season with the Gen Z actively participating and expressing themselves freely through 15 second videos. While the teenagers are busy finding their 15 seconds of fame and fun on the app, parents are often wondering, what makes the app so special.

TikTok is more than just a social media platform. It is a community of people sharing their talent and knowledge with the world in their own unique way. What makes it even more special for teenagers is that it is a place where they can let their guard down and find an outlet to their own individual expression.

With TikTok being the most popular app among teenagers, we’ve put together a list of few things parents can do as their teenager steps into the world of TikTok and help them be a responsible digital native.

For 13 years and above only: TikTok as a platform only allows users above the age of 13 years. Age Gate is the in app safety feature which allows only users who are 13 or above to create or log in on to the platform. This feature ensures that your child below 13 won’t even get access to the platform.

Encourage positivity: There are a number of hashtags that are trending in the app at any given point. Spend some time with you little one on the app to help them understand which are some of the good, positive and trending hashtags to follow. We’d highly recommend #EduTok for some knowledge driven and motivational videos.

Keep a check on the time spent: Digital Wellbeing is a key safety feature of the app that all parents should know about. With the ‘screen time management’ under this feature, parents can set up time limits of 40, 60, 90 or 120 minutes. If they reach their screen time limit, they will need to enter a password to continue to use TikTok that makes monitoring their engagement with the platform easier.

Control the content watched: Another feature that promotes digital wellbeing is Restricted Mode.‘Restricted mode’ limits the content in the app that may not be appropriate for young users. This feature can be activated via a password.

Keep Haters Out: To keep your teenager safe from unpleasant comments, introduce them to the comments filter feature. With this, you can select upto 30 keywords in Hindi and English, to be filtered out automatically from comments. This is an excellent way to protect your little one from cyber bullies.

Device Management: The Device Management feature, introduced by the platform, allows users to end sessions or remove their accounts from other devices from within the TikTok. This feature will help parents avoid the misuse of children’s accounts.

By Manoj

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