#TweakTikTok to Increase Sensitivity and Safety in their App

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All it takes is a 15-second video for a person to become an internet sensation! 

This is the power of TikTok, a platform that has nearly 81 million monthly active users in India. 

We live in a digital world where we spend hours watching, liking, reading, commenting on, sharing, and forwarding content. This has only increased ever since the country has been in a lockdown. 

While it is great to see people use digital platforms, the flip-side is scary! TikTok has become the abode of abusive, sexist, and provocative content that sometimes includes children. Just recently, some TikTok users shared content that depicted and ‘implicitly’ provoked acid attacks on women post a breakup. This is only one example. The TikTok universe is filled with  dangerous content that might steer the society in the wrong direction. 

The ease with which apps like these can be accessed can often be used in a negative way. Cyber bullying is also on the rise. With the increase in internet usage in India, it’s high time to bring reforms in TikTok’s structure so as to reconnect it to its roots - ‘to encourage creativity and bring joy’. Sign my petition.

Tiktok already has a robust set of guidelines in place, but that is not enough. As a responsible social media platform, there needs to be proper monitoring of content. 

The solution is not in banning the app. This is why I am asking TikTok to take a step towards incorporating sensitivity and safety in their app by:

  1. Prominently Placing the ‘Report Abuse’ Button:
    While the ‘like’ option is placed prominently, the ‘dislike’ button is absent and the ‘report abuse/spam’ option isn't clearly available on the screen. There is an urgent need to make the report abuse option prominent so that immediate action can be taken on content that violates guidelines. 
  2. Adding Disclaimers
    There are a lot of communal/sexist content that are posted without any disclaimers of fictionality or sarcasm under trending hashtags. TikTok must introduce a compulsory disclaimer for videos of this kind and keep tabs on how popular hashtags are mis/used, so as to limit audience reach in case dangerous content are being shared under the guise of these hashtags.

In a day and age where we are moving towards Digital India, we also need to take leaps and bounds in bridging the gender inequality gap. Sign my petition asking TikTok India to increase safety and sensitivity in their app by adding disclaimers and making their report abuse button more prominent. 

I am sure with these additions, this app will truly be used for entertainment, and not become a platform that misrepresents sensitive issues. #TweakTikTok