TikTok is updating its community guidelines to make it safer for its over one billion monthly users. The company is introducing a series of policy changes targeting content uploaded to the app.
The company announced on Tuesday that it would crack down on videos that critics say glorify eating disorders as well as dangerous viral challenges. The company says it will start removing videos that promote extreme forms of disorderly eating such as short-term fasting and overexercising.
Although eating disorder-promoting content is already prohibited on the network, news reports have frequently revealed that users are exposed to videos depicting dangerous eating habits. US Senators challenged TikTok representatives during a congressional hearing in October to do more to protect underage users.
“We’re making this change, in consultation with eating disorders experts, researchers, and physicians, as we understand that people can struggle with unhealthy eating patterns and behavior without having an eating disorder diagnosis,” the company announced.
The policy revisions also include an explicit prohibition on hateful beliefs, including deadnaming, misgendering, and misogyny, as well as information that promotes conversion therapy.
According to a TikTok transparency report, over 91 million videos accounting for 1 percent of all videos uploaded, were removed for content violations in the third quarter of 2021.
“We use a combination of technology and people to identify and remove violations of our Community Guidelines, and we will continue training our automated systems and safety teams to uphold our policies,” the company said in its announcement.
TikTok critics have expressed concern regarding the platform’s deadly challenges and scams. The social media platform revealed plans to broadcast a series of videos made with creators to assist users judge content they come across, in addition to giving more clarity to the online challenges policy. According to the corporation, videos will display in the #SaferTogether hub on the Discover page.