Social networks (all, regardless of the target audience) are constantly having to mediate between their desire to keep people on the platform as much as possible, to scroll, scroll and scroll endlesslyand trying to help them don’t overdo the doom-scrolling (things?).
Over the past few years, these two different and conflicting needs led to the birth of the concept of digital well-being, which the various companies interpret each in its own way. And the news introduced today by TikTokwhich will be available “within the next few weeks”, go precisely in this direction.
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A timer to spend less time on the app
First of all, a warning was introduced to signal the need for a break, which will appear “after a certain period of uninterrupted time on the screen” and adds to the possibility of setting the maximum daily time spent on the app (an option that already existed). The user can customize the timer and the intervention threshold: once the set period has elapsed, a message which will remind the person that it is time to interrupt the session.
In addition, the dashboard that reports the information on the time spent on TikTok: in the new control panel there will be additional data on the time spent daily on the app and on how many times it has been opened, in addition to the detail of use during the day or at night; here too, subscribers can choose to receive a notification on a weekly basis inviting them to check this information.
Also interesting is the fact that weekly notifications aimed specifically at young people have been introduced: when a user between 13 and 17 years old uses the app to more than 100 minutes on the same day, the next time you log in, you will receive a reminder inviting you to use the Time Management function. And (hopefully) to spend a little more in the real world instead of the virtual one.
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What teenagers want from social networks
On these issues, those of online well-being especially of children, there is a great deal of attention on the part of families both by the legislators. Which is one of the reasons why there is a great deal of attention from the platforms social.
From research that TikTok conducted together with Internet Matters involving parents and teenagers in the UK, Ireland, France, Germany and Italy, emerged (here the details of the results) that it is girls and boys who are asking for more data usage and more proactive alerts, such as pop-ups and messages; another need seems to have flexible tools capable of adapting to the different circumstances in which they find themselves, because sometimes one has the need to spend more time online and other times to limit it. Because the point is always the same: don’t demonize, but get informed and find the right balance.