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Social media giant TikTok announced Wednesday that screen time for users under 18 will be limited to just 60 minutes a day.

The setting will be automatically activated and requires a password to continue scrolling through the app once the time limit is hit.

Parents and guardians will be able to use Family Pairing to customize their daily screen time limit for their children.

This feature will allow them to give different time limits depending on the day of the week, allowing families to take schedules and vacations into consideration.

TikTok did not confirm an exact date for the new features to be rolled out, but confirmed it would be ‘in the coming weeks.’ 

New settings will also allow parents to mute notifications from the app for their teens, with users aged 13 to 15 not receiving any from 9pm and those aged 16 to 17 from 10pm

New settings will also allow parents to mute notifications from the app for their teens, with users aged 13 to 15 not receiving any from 9pm and those aged 16 to 17 from 10pm

Among the new features, teenagers aged between 13 and 15 will automatically have their accounts set to private – meaning the users must choose what they want to share.

Direct messaging will only be available to those 16 and older, and users will now have to be at least 18 to host a live video. 

A screen time dashboard is also being introduced, which gives a breakdown of the total time spent on TikTok during the night and day.

New settings will also allow parents to mute notifications from the app for their teens, with users aged 13 to 15 not receiving any from 9pm and those aged 16 to 17 from 10pm.

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Cormac Keenan, Head of Trust and Safety at TikTok, said: ‘Today we’re announcing new features for teens, families, and our broader community.

‘We believe digital experiences should bring joy and play a positive role in how people express themselves, discover ideas, and connect.

‘We’re improving our screen time tool with more custom options, introducing new default settings for teen accounts, and expanding Family Pairing with more parental controls.’

Direct messaging will only be available to those 16 and older, and you have to be at least 18 to host a live video

Direct messaging will only be available to those 16 and older, and you have to be at least 18 to host a live video

They are also rolling out a sleep reminder to help schedule when users want to be offline at night, with a notification popping up to remind them it is time to log off

They are also rolling out a sleep reminder to help schedule when users want to be offline at night, with a notification popping up to remind them it is time to log off

TikTok executives consulted the Digital Wellness Lab at Boston Children’s Hospital in choosing the limit.

They are also prompting teens to set their own daily screen time limit if they opt out of the 60-minute default and spend more than 100 minutes on the app each day.

In a statement, they added that they would send each teen account a weekly inbox notification with a recap of their screen time.

As well as rolling out the new features in the Family Pairing, the app will also be allowing everyone who uses the app to set their own customized time limits for each day.

Tik Tok is also rolling out a sleep reminder to help schedule when users want to be offline at night, with a notification popping up to remind them it is time to log off.

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The move to limit time screen for minors comes as TikTok has been under fire for ‘failing to protect children from harm,’ according to the National Center on Sexual Exploitation.

Parents and guardians will be able to use Family Pairing to customize their daily screen time limit for their children

Parents and guardians will be able to use Family Pairing to customize their daily screen time limit for their children

The group released a statement in April 2022, stating that the app is a ‘magnet for sexual predators.’ 

TikTok becoming known as a “hunting ground’ for predators has not stopped its growth, and the platform has given predators easy access to groom, abuse, and traffic children,’ according to the National Center on Sexual Exploitation.

‘Exploiters use TikTok to view minor users, comment on videos, and message children where they are often requesting or sending sexually explicit videos or pictures.’

Other concerns have been raised by parents who worry the app exposes children to content that would otherwise not be allowed in their homes.

This includes popular music with swearing and sexual lyrics, which are not age appropriate for those under 18.

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