TikTok branching into educational content with STEM feed

15 Mar 2023

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TikTok is creating a feed dedicated to STEM-related videos for users that want to delve deeper into educational content.

TikTok is working on a new STEM feature to give users easy access to educational content on the video app.

This upcoming feature will create a feed dedicated to science, technology, engineering and maths videos to support education-based communities using the app. This feed is still in development, with a launch planned for US users later this month.

The video company said it already has a growing amount of STEM-related content on the platform, with 110bn views to date on videos with related hashtags.

“We believe discovery is essential to the TikTok experience, and we’re always looking to help our community uncover new and relevant content,” the company said in a blog post.

“We designed the STEM feed to serve as a destination for those looking to dive into these enriching topics further.”

TikTok said it has expanded its partnerships with Common Sense Networks and Poynter to help high-quality STEM videos reach its viewers.

These two organisations will monitor the STEM feed. TikTok said Common Sense Networks will assess all content to ensure it’s appropriate for the feed, while Poynter will assess the reliability of the information presented.

The video platform said that content will need to pass both checklists to be eligible for the STEM feed.

“By leveraging Common Sense Networks’ singular expertise in content evaluation, we can ensure that these digital experiences for teens will be valuable, educational and entertaining,” said Common Sense Networks CEO Eric Berger.

At the start of March, TikTok revealed a batch of new features to help teenagers and their parents manage the time spent using the app. This includes a 60-minute daily screen time limit on all accounts that belong to users under the age of 18.

TikTok is also facing scrutiny from various governments, due to concerns that that the app, which is owned by Beijing-based ByteDance, may be providing private user data from around the world to the Chinese government for surveillance purposes.

UK security minister Tom Tugendhat revealed this week that he has asked the National Cyber Security Centre to review whether the app should be banned on government devices.

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Leigh Mc Gowran is a journalist with Silicon Republic