Too bad for you, edgelords, your big boy TikTok jabs will not stand. Today, the platform announced a new feature allowing TikTokers to wipe out up to 100 comments in one stroke. TikTok says that users will now be able to select tick boxes and mass-delete, much like an email inbox. The company expects to roll this out globally in a few weeks.
For TikTok’s historical faults (namely, overbroad, sometimes cruel and racist censorship) the company has at least done a better job of publicly focusing on making the platform less toxic than its peers. Rather than, say, producing stupid useless bells and whistles. In March, TikTok rolled out anti-bullying comment filters for creators. Posters can filter by potentially abusive language and spam, and/or sort through all comments for approval. It also added a prompt asking users to reconsider before posting a potentially “inappropriate or unkind” comment.
Aside from the evidence in a casual perusal of comments sections, TikTok has a measurable cyberbullying problem. In a 2020 survey by the security research firm Security.org, parents of children who used social media reported that 64% were cyberbullied on TikTok. That’s after YouTube (79%) and Snapchat (69%). This means that TikTok now surpasses Instagram (61%), previously found to be the most common app for cyberbullying. (The higher rate could have something to do with TikTok’s popularity.)
A platform made a useful social media update. Expect Facebook’s copycat soon.