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TikTok, every teenager’s favorite app, just rolled out new parental controls

TikTok is giving parents more control over how their teens are using the app.
TikTok is giving parents more control over how their teens are using the app. (Shutterstock)

TikTok is giving parents more control over how their teens are using the app.

On Wednesday, the short-form video platform rolled out a new feature called Family Safety Mode, which lets parents manage their kid's activity and time spent on the platform. It's available in certain European countries for now.

The company did not immediately respond to a request for comment on whether the tool will come to other regions, including the US, in the future.

With the new feature, parents can determine time limits for their child each day, with intervals including 40 minutes, 60 minutes and 90 minutes. Parents can also limit or turn off direct messages, and restrict certain content that might not be appropriate for all age groups.

TikTok is dominated by Generation Z users -- about 60% of the app's US monthly users are ages 16 to 24, according to data from influencer marketing firm Mediakix. On the app, users typically share 15-second clips of themselves dancing, lip-syncing, doing comedy skits or participating in challenges that pop up on the platform.

As CNN Business recently reported, the app's popularity among teens, combined with its unique potential for overnight viral stardom, has forced parents to grapple with difficult questions around everything from privacy to how their kids can profit from the platform.

In the US, TikTok offers a limited version of the app for users under 13. It doesn't allow for sharing or commenting on videos and messaging with other people, but kids can still view TikTok content that is age appropriate.

"We want people to have fun on TikTok, but it's also important for our community to look after their wellbeing which means having a healthy relationship with online apps and services," Cormac Keenan, TikTok's head of trust and safety for the EMEA region, wrote in a blog post.

Last year, TikTok added a screen time management tool that allows users to set time limits for how long they spend on the platform every day. Earlier this month, the company said it’s partnered with popular TikTok stars to make short videos that encourage users to monitor how much they’re using the platform.