Musical.ly announced earlier this summer that they are going to be featuring original shows from networks like NBC, Seventeen Magazine, and Viacom. We’ve written before about how we don’t like their lack of age verification even though the CEO seems to think it’s no big deal. The lip-syncing video app’s newest update will put more previously unseen and original content in front of your kids. The updates include a “Watch Next” feature that will use what’s called “computer vision” to see what they are watching and make a decision about what other videos (original content or user generated) to recommend they view next.
The No. 1 goal of the new app design is to make “a wide range of content more accessible,” Hofmann said. – Variety.com
This update also includes a new look and feel to the app and some new ways to personalize your profile page. The most interesting addition, from a parental control standpoint, is the idea that an algorithm is going to be recommending more videos for your kids to watch.
What Parents Should Know
This feature isn’t entirely new to streaming apps. You’ve seen Netflix, Amazon, Hulu, and YouTube feature videos or shows that they think you might enjoy. Their recommendations are based on what you’ve been watching, just like those in the Musical.ly app. The concern, here, is some of what may be available on Musical.ly and the fact that most parents don’t keep an eye on what their kids do on the app.
I still don’t recommend parents allow this app on their kids’ and young teenager’s phones because of the lack of age verification. It’s still on our uninstall list and will remain there until they take the risk of predators contacting kids on this app more seriously.