TikTok Promotes Self-Harm and Eating Disorder Posts, Raising Mental Health Concerns
A recent report from the Center for Countering Digital Hate has raised concerns about the impact of social media on the mental health of youth, particularly in relation to TikTok. The report revealed that TikTok's algorithms are promoting videos about self-harm and eating disorders to vulnerable teens.
To investigate this further, the researchers created fictional teen personas in the US, UK, Canada, and Australia. The researchers then “liked” videos about self-harm and eating disorders to observe how TikTok's algorithm would respond. Within minutes, the platform began recommending videos about losing weight and self-harm, including ones featuring images of models and idealized body types, razor blades, and discussions of suicide.
The report also highlighted the fact that TikTok has become an increasingly popular platform for teens and that its algorithms have been found to be particularly effective at targeting vulnerable young people. This raises serious questions about the platform's responsibility to protect its users, particularly in relation to mental health.
The report from the Center for Countering Digital Hate has raised serious concerns about the impact of social media on the mental health of young people, particularly in relation to TikTok's algorithms. It has sparked a wider debate about the role of social media in promoting mental health issues and the need for more regulation to ensure that platforms are held accountable for the content they promote.