Douyin and TikTok developer ByteDance recently announced that users under the age of 14 in China will be automatically limited to Douyin in Youth Mode and 40 minutes a day. You also cannot access the app between 10:00 PM and 6:00 AM
“Many parents attribute their children’s grades to play, but I disagree,” said Liu Yanbin, mother of a 9-year-old daughter in Shanghai. “As long as children don’t want to learn, they find a way to play. Games may be restricted now, but there are always short videos, social media, and even television dramas. “
Tao Ran, director of Beijing’s Adolescent Psychological Development Base, which specializes in treating internet addiction, believes that around 20% of children will find remedy for the rules.
“Some minors are too smart, if you have a system that prevents them from gambling, they will try to beat the system by borrowing accounts from their elderly relatives and finding a way to bypass facial recognition,” Tao said.
The new rules are a “last resort”.
Instead of relying on government intervention, parents must take responsibility for limiting time spent on games, social media, or the internet, experts say.
“The focus should be on prevention, for example informing parents about how games work so that they can better regulate their children’s involvement,” says Joël Billieux, professor of psychology at the University of Lausanne in Switzerland.