TikTok launches probe into pro-starvation and anorexia content material: Report
TikTok has opened an investigation after The Guardian highlighted that eating disorders content was still available on the platform, despite the company announcing measures earlier this year to address “problematic” and “excessive” claims about diet and weight loss. According to reports, the Guardian briefed the Chinese video platform about the loopholes that users abuse and anorexia content can find on the platform. TikTok has launched an investigation into the results and allegedly banned harmful phrases.
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In September, TikTok announced that the company’s new advertising guidelines would ban ads that promote harmful or negative body image and increase restrictions on weight management products. “As a society, weight stigma and body embarrassment pose both individual and cultural challenges, and we know that if the internet is not vetted, it risks exacerbating such issues,” TikTok said in a statement on Sept. 23.
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However, The Guardian claims that starving and unsafe weight loss content will continue to be available on the platform if users know how to play the search algorithm. According to the UK daily, several reports appear promoting eating disorders when forbidden phrases are searched for through intentional misspellings. The same can be achieved through misspelled hashtags on the platform.
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Dr. Jon Goldin, vice chairman of the Faculty of Children and Adolescents at the Royal College of Psychiatrists, has described the results as “deeply worrying”. Goldin called on the regulators to take an active role in banning such harmful content. Meanwhile, Ysabel Gerrard, lecturer in digital media and society at the University of Sheffield, said it was very easy for users to find content related to eating disorders and suggested that TikTok itself put hundreds of videos on the “For You” page. will suggest if someone has the “correct account.”
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