TikTok announced Tuesday that it would be strengthening its community guidelines. In the most recent update to its safety rules, the company made it clear that actions like misgendering, deadnaming, and the promotion of conversion therapy would not be tolerated on the platform. The change comes after recommendations from the media advocacy group GLAAD, the largest media advocacy group for the LGBTQ+ community, and the gender justice advocacy group, UltraViolet.
“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,” said Sarah Kate Ellis, president and CEO of GLAAD, in a statement. She added that the platform’s added clarity to these policies “raises the standard for LGBTQ safety online” and suggested that other social media platforms should do the same.
UltraViolet also praised the move: “We applaud TikTok for responding effectively to our recommendations and implementing them into an updated, more protective user policy,” said Bridget Todd, the advocacy group’s communications director in a statement. “Even so, it’s clear social media platforms have a long way to go across the board.”
TikTok, which has been criticized for being heavy-handed with its content removal, said in the update that it would also take a “stricter approach” to dangerous acts and challenges, regulating content regarding eating disorders, and refining rules related to hateful ideologies.