TikTok takes extra steps to curb dangerous challenges

TikTok is trying to strengthen the detection and enforcement of rules against dangerous online challenges and hoaxes.

Just over one in five teenagers has participated in an online challenge, a survey commissioned by TikTok suggests.

But only one in 50 has taken part in a “risky and dangerous” – and fewer than one in 300 a “really dangerous” – one.

The survey looked at teenagers’ broad online experience, without focusing on any one platform.

There has been widespread concern about the proliferation, across various platforms, of potentially harmful online challenges.

Last year, the “skull-breaker” challenge, shared on TikTok, was linked to injuries.

And this year, doctors warned of the risk to life and limb of the “milk-crate challenge”, which invited the foolhardy to climb pyramids of milk crates.

But online challenges can also be positive and promote worthwhile causes, experts note, such as the “ice-bucket challenge”, which helped raise awareness of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS).

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