By Stephanie Hind, Creator Management and Operations, TikTok US and Tara Wadhwa, Trust & Safety, TikTok US
TikTok is fueled by viewers, doers, creators, and makers. And each day people around the world create and share millions of videos on TikTok. We love that our community feels empowered to express themselves on the platform, while also using it to learn more about the world around them. To help people explore TikTok safely, today we're proud to launch a new safety video series, called "Be Informed," which shows users how to help keep TikTok a place where authentic content can thrive.
The "Be Informed" series addresses an important building block for an informed online experience: media literacy. Being media literate means having the ability to access, analyze, evaluate, create, and act using all forms of communication. The "Be Informed" series builds on our previous safety videos ("You're In Control"), a series which highlighted TikTok's safety features, to now provide advice on how to evaluate content online and use those skills and TikTok's in-app features to help protect against the inadvertent spread of misleading information. As with our "You're in Control" video series, the "Be Informed" series can be accessed directly in-app on @TikTokTips.
User safety is something we take seriously and we're proud to work with experts and leading organizations, including the Family Online Safety Institute and ConnectSafely, to help guide our approach in maintaining the well-being of the community. To develop the "Be Informed" series, we partnered with the National Association for Media Literacy Education (NAMLE). NAMLE is a network of educators, scholars, researchers, practitioners, media makers, and thought leaders in the field of media literacy. Like NAMLE, we believe that media literacy is crucial to enhancing the online experience for everyone.
"In an increasingly digital world, it's imperative that social media platforms partner with the media literacy education community and adopt a more active role in educating their users on how to engage with and understand the content they encounter as part of their safety measures. It's been great to partner with TikTok on this important work and we're glad to see these important skills highlighted on their platform." - Michelle Ciulla Lipkin, Executive Director, NAMLE
User education and safety have always been important to us, and the health of our community is, too. With social distancing of top priority during the coronavirus pandemic, this series was notable as the first safety videos filmed entirely remotely. The TikTok creators we partnered with to bring this series to life all acted, took virtual direction, and filmed themselves from their homes.
"These videos, set against the backdrop of a set of infomercials, truly showcase the personality of our creators, each of whom added their own unique twists and ideas to the filming," said Kudzi Chikumbu, Director of Creator Community, TikTok. " We're honored to have a creator community that cares so deeply about their TikTok community, and we hope these videos can help encourage people to think critically about what they see – whether on our app or anywhere online – in a fun, lighthearted way."
Check out some of our most beloved TikTok creators in the "Be Informed" video series:
- "Question the Source" asks users to find out who is authoring the content that they see.
- "Question the Graphics" challenges the TikTok community to analyze the visual images they come across.
- "Question Your Bias" reminds users to consider how their experiences influence what they believe.
- "When to Share vs. When to Report" encourages users to reflect on whether the content they want to share, should be shared.
- "Fact vs. Opinion" helps users determine whether statements are expressing truths or beliefs.
- "Not Interested" shows users that they can control what they see.
You can find the entire "Be Informed" video series on the @TikTokTips account, and check out the dedicated creators who participated in this project: @cosette, @gabe, @leethe4th, @chemteacherphil, @shreksdumpster, @josiah.hughes, @tylerjoe, @adamw, @spence and, of course @hi_im_chewie.
"Working on a TikTok safety video remotely was definitely a challenge I was excited to take on. The most challenging parts of shooting the safety video series remotely were mirroring the phone into the call, making sure the right people were on mute, and maintaining a strong internet connection. As this was really one of the first times any of us had done an entire remote shoot at that production level, there was definitely a learning curve!" - @cosette
"I had never filmed with a full crew before but the experience was fantastic. Everyone was so professional and did everything to ensure filming was planned to the smallest detail and executed with precision. The most challenging aspect for me was making sure that I was listening carefully to directions and keeping my body in the right spot. I have such respect for actors and production crews now...you don’t realize how hard it is until you have to do it yourself and realize how much specific guidance is given behind the scenes and how difficult it can be to match what you’re being asked to do! The whole experience was something I’ll never forget and hope to get to experience again." - @chemteacherphil
"Thanks to the amazing tools provided and communication, I felt it was an effective and enjoyable collaboration. I worked on the project for two full days, setting up different shots and playing the part of an online detective. It was challenging to overcome the connection delay due to shooting in 4k, but I took the time to watch and felt confident with each completed scene before moving on. I really enjoyed working with a green screen because it allowed more creativity and imagination." -@gabe
"Filming content remotely is always a challenge. There were definitely a few times where I would frame up a shot, shoot, and then think that I did a great job. Then I would go back to review my footage only to find half of my body was cut out of the frame. Fail." - @TylerJoe