GB News’ Bev Turner has hit out at a new study, as figures show Britain’s children are spending a record amount of time on TikTok.
The latest research from parental controls company Qustodio revealed that British youngsters between the ages of four and 18 spent 127 minutes a day on the video-based app.
The figures are an 11 per cent increase compared to the previous year, which was gathered using anonymous data from 400,000 smartphone users globally.
The average globally was 112 minutes per day, slightly less than those in Britain.
Bev Turner admits she is ‘terrified’ of internet regulation
First created in 2016, the app now has over 3 billion downloads, and over 1 billion active users each month.
TikTok does impose an age restriction whereby users aren’t allowed on the app unless they are over the age of 13, but the 60 minute screen-time warning on children’s accounts can be ignored.
Reacting to the data on GB News, host Bev Turner admitted as a parent it is “very difficult” to stop children from spending an excessive amount of time on their phones.
Bev added that it’s also hard “not to blame the children” as smartphones and apps such as TikTok are “addictive” for the current generations of children.
Bev Turner admitted it is ‘difficult’ as a parent to control a child’s smartphone
Bev told her GB News panel: “We need a collective responsibility to the next generation. And I don’t feel the will is there from teachers, from politicians, from tech giants.
“It’s in their interest to create algorithms which will create an addiction, and also for parents it’s so hard for us when it feels like we’re the only ones pushing water uphill against these massively influential forces.”
Lord Daniel Moylan agreed and criticised the Online Safety Bill, which passed in Parliament in October 2023, but is yet to be fully implemented.
Moylan stated: “It is first and foremost obviously the parent’s responsibility. That doesn’t mean it’s only the parent’s responsibility.
Lord Daniel Moylan questioned if adult free speech will be restricted with the Online Safety Act
“It is true to some extent that of course you have got people trying to generate an addictive product, but that’s what the whole Online Safety Act was meant to try and address, to stop them doing that in relation to children.
Moylan continued: “We haven’t seen it come into proper effect yet, but is that going to work or not? And what are the prices? What is the price that’s going to be paid in terms of freedom of speech for adults?”
Bev agreed, admitting: “It terrifies me that Ofcom are going to regulate the Internet. It literally keeps me awake at night.
“But also in terms of the Online Safety Bill, the idea that as adults you can’t look at adult material without perhaps giving a facial recognition of who you are with your identity, it’s ridiculous.”