Regulations within Tik Tok
Tik Tok has emerged as one of the biggest social media platforms over the past few years. It continues to grow and has new users joining every month. This platform allows users to be creative and post any type of video they want. The platform is accessible for many but does have regulations and restrictions. These regulations impact the users’ experience. Most of the restrictions revolve around the app regulating the different content that users can view.
One way the app regulates what content is seen by a user is by having an algorithm for what videos are displayed on their “for you” page. This algorithm becomes created the moment an individual first uses the app. The algorithm allows for videos that are more appealing for the user to appear and makes the app feel more customized and specific for that user. This is controlled by many different factors. One factor is through user interactions. The app will record what videos are liked, shared, and commented on and it will take note of what users are being followed. Another factor for the algorithm is the video information. The app will track the different captions, hashtags and sounds and see what the user enjoys. One last factor is the account settings which can be based off location, language and even the device that the app is being used on (Mc Glew). These factors all contribute to the ways in which the app regulates what content a user can see. The content is specific to the user and limits the other variety of content that is posted on the app. Once a user has had the app for a while and interacted with many videos the “for you page” becomes even more personalized, so it limits the other types of content that is posted.
Another way that the app regulates content is through banning accounts and removing videos and sounds. The platform removes these aspects of content off the app due to potential violations with the guidelines. Tik Tok wants to create a safe community and ensure that the guidelines within the app are being followed. Some bans can go to the extremes of accounts being permanently removed or they can be removed for a few days. Depending upon the severity of the violation impacts the actions Tik Tok takes toward the creator. Some reasons due to content bans can be due to graphic, violent, and explicit types of content or other types that are like the ones listed. One specific ban is shadow banning which is when the app stops displaying a creator’s video on the for you page and limits the number of views it could receive. It restricts the overall exposure the video could potentially receive (MJ). These bans are due to the app looking out for the safety of its users, but it does cause issues with creators on the platforms in some situations.
While some of the app’s restrictions may seem to come off as a negative impact for a user’s experience, there is one restriction that helps parents feel as if the app is safer for their children. This is called restricted mode. Restricted mode allows for both content and sounds to be limited to ensure that the user is not seeing any inappropriate content. This regulates the content that the child will be viewing and displays content that fits their age rather than displaying content that is targeted for older and more mature audiences. This mode can be easily activated or de activated by the parents. This creates a safer space for the child and makes the parents feel more comfortable with the app.
Tik Tok implements many restrictions within the app to regulate the different content users can view. These regulations can impact a user’s experience with the app in both positive and negative ways depending upon the individual and the experience they want to receive.
Mc Glew, Molly. “This Is How the TikTok Algorithm Works.” Later, June 23, 2021. https://later.com/blog/tiktok-algorithm
MJ, Alice. “How Tiktok Ban Works: Whether a Temporary or Permanent Ban.” How TikTok Ban Works: Whether a Temporary or Permanent Ban- Dr.Fone. Wondershare Dr.Fone, October 20, 2021. https://drfone.wondershare.com/unban-tiktok/tiktok-ban-temporary-or-permanent.html