TikTok will ban anyone under the age of 18 from live streaming

TikTok will ban anyone under the age of 18 from live streaming

The BBC found hundreds of accounts broadcasting live from Syrian refugee camps, featuring children asking for donations. TikTok will raise the minimum age for live streaming on the platform from 16 to 18 starting next month.

A BBC investigation found hundreds of active accounts from Syrian refugee camps, with children asking for donations. Some received up to $1,000 an hour, but when they cashed out, they saw TikTok keep up to 70%.

In the future, only adults will be able to “send virtual gifts or access monetization features,” TikTok said.

The app also announced that “in the coming weeks” it will only allow adult users to broadcast live.

However, it is unclear how TikTok will enforce these age restrictions.

Meta, which owns Facebook and Instagram, and Google, which owns YouTube, have a minimum live streaming age of 13 and already allow users to restrict the content they upload by age.

Digital gifts

For five months, the BBC Global Disinformation Unit, the BBC Arabic Service and BBC Eye Investigations followed more than 300 TikTok accounts broadcasting live from north-west Syria.

TikTok’s rules say the user must not solicit gifts directly and must “avoid harm, endangerment or exploitation” of minors on the platform.

When the BBC used the system built into the app to report 30 accounts featuring children begging, TikTok said its policies had not been violated in any of the cases.

After the BBC contacted TikTok directly for comment, the company banned all accounts.

TikTok said that this type of content was not allowed on its platform and that its commission for digital gifts was significantly less than 70%, but has not yet confirmed the exact amount.

TikTok is the fastest growing social media app in the world and has been downloaded more than 3.9 billion times.

It has earned more than $6.2 billion in gross revenue from spending on the app since its launch in 2017, according to analytics firm Sensor Tower.

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