TikTok rolls out the ability for creators to restrict videos to adult viewers only.
TikTok has announced additions to its audience controls feature, enabling creators to restrict their videos to adult viewers. The adult-only audience controls previously only applied to TikTok Live, but now the company is expanding the controls to include short-form videos. The feature is now available to select creators, with global expansion coming in the next few weeks.
“To be clear: our policies still fully apply to creators who use this feature, and we will remove content which contains nudity and other violations of our Community Guidelines,” TikTok’s blog post reads.
Under TikTok’s policies, the 18+ restriction setting for videos is not a way for creators to display adult content. As with adult-only TikTok Live broadcasts, TikTok views the setting as a way for creators to prevent minors from encountering content aimed at an adult audience. The company has said creators could use the setting for comedy content that is better suited for people over 18 or for discussing difficult life experiences while limiting the conversation to adults.
TikTok has previously said it wanted to start identifying which content is appropriate for younger and older teens or adults, to develop a system to identify and restrict certain types of content from being accessed by teens — who make up two-thirds of TikTok’s userbase. To this end, the company asks creators to specify when their content is more appropriate for an adult audience.
The announcement is part of TikTok’s broader move toward increasing teen safety features on its platform. The company has also announced the launching of the next iteration of its “borderline suggestive” model, which automatically identifies sexually explicit or suggestive content or that which may be borderline. The new iteration is naturally expected to be better at detecting such content.
Last year, TikTok rolled out Content Levels to prevent certain content with more “mature or complex themes” from reaching teens. TikTok reports that it has prevented teen accounts from viewing over 1 million “overtly sexually suggestive” videos in the last 30 days alone.
TikTok has faced significant scrutiny over the safety of children and teens on the platform from parents, regulators, and lawmakers alike. A group of parents sued the company last year after their children died from attempting dangerous challenges they had allegedly learned about on TikTok.