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TikTok rolls out features to help teens’ mental health as Instagram comes under fire

Rafael Henrique | LightRocket | Getty Pictures

TikTok announced Tuesday a slew of options meant to assist customers fighting psychological well being points and ideas of suicide.

These embody well-being guides, a help information for these fighting consuming problems and a search intervention characteristic that may direct customers to help sources after they lookup phrases equivalent to #suicide.

TikTok’s announcement of the brand new options adopted a Wall Street Journal report that stated Facebook has repeatedly discovered its Instagram app might be dangerous to youngsters’ psychological well being in sure conditions.

The 2 apps are in tight competitors for teenagers’ consideration. Since its 2017 launch, Chinese language-owned TikTok has gained floor on Instagram. Final yr, it surpassed Instagram as U.S. youngsters’ second-favorite social media app after Snapchat, in response to an October 2020 report by Piper Sandler.

TikTok’s new options will direct customers to help, equivalent to a Disaster Textual content Line in the event that they seek for the time period “suicide.”

Though TikTok’s new options could also be timed to Nationwide Suicide Prevention Week, which was final week, the timing is fortuitous. Following the Journal’s report, U.S. lawmakers heavily criticized Fb for social media’s impression on teen psychological well being and the corporate’s failure to handle the issues.

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