TikTok has made some changes and they are most welcome
TikTok has taken new measures to protect its LGBT+ users by banning certain content on the platform and allowing users to add pronouns to their bio.
Instagram added the pronouns feature back in May 2021, with Twitter announcing plans to do so that same month.
The updated guidelines include a ban on deadnaming transgender people and also any content that supports or promotes the practice of conversion therapy, in a move they say is “adding clarity on the types of hateful ideologies prohibited on our platform”
Cormac Keenan, the platform’s head of trust and safety, said in a statement on February 8: “Today we’re announcing updates to our Community Guidelines to further support the well-being of our community and the integrity of our platform.
“Though these ideologies have long been prohibited on TikTok, we’ve heard from creators and civil society organisations that it’s important to be explicit in our Community Guidelines”
“On top of this, we hope our recent feature enabling people to add their pronouns will encourage respectful and inclusive dialogue on our platform.”
According to GLAAD TikTok and Twitter are now the only major social media platforms to explicitly prohibit misgendering and deadnaming in their hate and harassment policies.
Sarah Kate Ellis, GLAAD’s President and CEO said in statement:
“When anti-transgender actions like misgendering or deadnaming, or the promotion of so-called ‘conversion therapy,’ occur on platforms like TikTok, they create an unsafe environment for LGBTQ people online and too often lead to real world harm,” she explained in a statement.
“TikTok’s move to expressly prohibit this harmful content in its Community Guidelines and to adopt recommendations made in GLAAD’s 2021 Social Media Safety Index raises the standard for LGBTQ safety online and sends a message that other platforms which claim to prioritise LGBTQ safety should follow suit with substantive actions like these.”
In addition to the prohibitions on misgendering and deadnaming, TikTok’s new policy will also “remove the promotion of disordered eating” and prohibit the use of TikTok to commit crimes, among other changes.
It’s fantastic news and, frankly, with so many young users, beyond time. Up until now the app could be somewhat of a queer minefield, on occasion. So now who’s next… your move, Instagram.
The company said all users will be prompted to read the updated guidelines when they open the app in the coming weeks.