ByteDance limits U-14 users to 40 mins a day

ByteDance limits U-14 users to 40 mins a day

Following a crackdown on gaming by Chinese authorities, ByteDance is introducing new youth controls for Douyin; its TikTok-equivalent app in China, Bloomberg has reported.


Any users confirmed to be under 14 will enter a new “youth mode” limited to 40 minutes of usage per day.


At the same time, it unveiled a new app called Xiao Qu Xing (“Little Fun Star”), a TikTok-style short video app with limited subject materials; a 40 minute time limit and the ability to like, but not upload or share videos.


On top of the time restriction, kids in China won’t be able to access Douyin between 10PM and 6AM.


The new controls only apply to users who supplied their real names and ages, so to that end; Douyin has asked parents to register their kids’ real information.


ByteDance also added more content to Douyin with educational subjects like science, art history, history and more.


The new app, Xiao Qu Xing, appears to offer exclusively educational content.

Gaming limits introduced earlier this month are even more restrictive, with under-14s limited to just three hours per week between 8-9PM on Friday.

ALSO READ: TikTok faces two privacy probes by EU regulator over handling of data


 weekends and public holidays. Previously, kids could game for 90 minutes a day and three hours on holidays.


The rule change was put in place to combat gaming addiction, regulators said.


The TikTok restrictions won’t affect as many kids, however.


According to an article in the South China Morning Post (SCMP), just 0.34 percent of Douyin users are under 12, with 4.18 percent from 13-19 years old.


Those figures are far from certain, though, as Douyin doesn’t publish demographic data.


It also acknowledged that it might be easy to bypass the new rules. “As the first short video platform to launch minor protection measures; we deeply understand that there will be imperfections,” the company said in a statement.


To that end, it has launched a bug-finding campaign seeking “loopholes” in the login process.

About The Author

Osigweh Lilian Oluchi is a graduate of the University of Lagos where she obtained a B.A (Hons) in English, Masters in Public and International affairs (MPIA). Currently works with 1stnews as a Database Manager / Writer. [email protected]

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