Mornings with Kristen Herrmann

Weekdays 6:00am - 9:00am

Tiktok limiting underage users to 60 minutes or less.

As I got a notification that my screen time this week is over 5 hours (yikes!), I noticed this news update from TikTok. The company just announced new features for teens and families, one of which will limit screen time for underage users to under 60 minutes a day. It’s a good plan. They used the phrase “digital well being”. Never heard that one before.

More and more studies are coming out about the negative affects of social media on young people. It actually changes their brains. Nuts.

TikTok explains their new policy saying,” We consulted the current academic research and experts from the Digital Wellness Lab at Boston Children’s Hospital in choosing this limit. If the 60-minute limit is reached, teens will be prompted to enter a passcode in order to continue watching, requiring them to make an active decision to extend that time. For people in our under 13 experience, the daily screen time limit will also be set to 60 minutes, and a parent or guardian will need to set or enter an existing passcode to enable 30 minutes of additional watch time.”

My daughter Trudy, who isn’t even one year old yet is infatuated with my phone. It’s because I am infatuated with it. My husband with his. Everyone she’s exposed to is completely obsessed with these little black gadgets. It’s become like an extension of our hands, and so why shouldn’t she be interested too? We don’t allow screen time for her as a rule, but on occasion we’ll slip and let it happen. If she’s inconsolable in the car we’ve shown her the video to her favorite song “What I Am” by Will.I.Am. My brother-in-law even made her her own personal 10 hour mix:

A few times recently I’ve even pulled up Miss Rachel for babies. If you’re a parent, you’ve met Miss Rachel. She’s annoying, she’s fun and Trudy LOVES her. I kinda secretly do too.

Fast forward what… 10? years, and here comes the new TikTok, or whatever happens to be the Facebook/Snap Chat/TikTok/Metaverse popular teen social media platform of Trudy’s future. Will it take a toll on her mental health? Or be used as a means of bullying or who knows? We’ll hopefully be lucky to have more and more of these studies on kids and devices by the time she’s older. It’s all still so new now.

For now, we’ll probably still show her the occasional video. Or allow her to star in her own…


Tryna bring out the fabulous. #aboutdamntime @lizzo

♬ About Damn Time - Lizzo

But we’re keeping her off social media and endless scrolling as long as we possibly can. TikTok’s latest announcement will hopefully have a positive impact in limiting teen’s social media use, or at least help make them aware of their time spent on the platform. Sometimes just knowing how much time we’re wasting is enough to turn it off and take a break.

~ Kristen

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