TikTok boots underage users and boosts video length

1 Jul 2021

Image: © Natalia/Stock.adobe.com

TikTok says it will offer ‘more tok on the clock’ as it announces the roll-out of longer videos for creators, while doubling down on commitments to keeping users safe.

Following requests from its community of more than 650m users, social media app TikTok, said today (1 July) that it will give creators up to two additional minutes for their videos.

The company also released its latest transparency report, revealing that it removed the accounts of more than 7m users suspected of being under the age of 13.

Users suspected of lying about their age on the app to access mature content are monitored by a special safety moderation team as part of the company’s crackdown on content that violates community standards – such as nudity and harassment.

TikTok, which ranks as the seventh most used social media platform in the world, said previously that it would prioritise the safety of minors using the app. Since earlier this year, users under 16 automatically have their accounts set to private.

Nonetheless, the app is hugely popular with younger teenagers and members of Gen-Z thanks to its diverse range of easily accessible video content taking in topics ranging from feta pasta bake recipes to sea shanties.

The bite-sized videos are under 60 seconds long in duration, but since creators called for longer timeframes for their content, TikTok has been trialling videos spanning almost three minutes with a select few creators.

In a statement released earlier today, the company said, “Over the coming weeks, we’ll be rolling out the option to create longer videos to everyone on TikTok, giving our global community the flexibility to film, upload, and edit videos up to three minutes in length directly within TikTok.”

The company said it was excited to see how people using the platform would use the additional time to entertain and inspire their viewers.

All users have to do is wait to receive a notification telling them when the feature is ready for them to use.

The video-sharing platform, which is owned by Chinese company ByteDance, opened its first Trust and Accountability Centre in the US last year. In April, it announced that its new European Transparency and Accountability Centre would be located in Ireland.

Ireland was also selected as the location for TikTok’s first data centre in Europe, which is expected to be operational by early 2022.

Blathnaid O’Dea is Careers reporter at Silicon Republic