From my perspective here is the bottom line for parents. LIKEE is a social media app at its core. LIKEE is labeled as a video sharing app, which is technically correct, but it has all the earmarks of a social media app. Social media is inherently dangerous for teenagers.
Some commentators would make the case that teens should be on social media very little or not at all.
As a parent, ask yourself the following questions:
What is the best thing that could happen if you allow your child to use LIKEE?
You could make the argument that there are benefits derived from social media interactions between teens. There are sincere compliments paid, relationships maintained, connections to people with similar likes, struggles, etc. It can act as a support group, provide encouragement, perspective, etc. There are several possible good outcomes that can arise out of social media use.
On the other hand…
What is the worst thing that could happen if you allow your child to use LIKEE?
I can think of a number of really bad things:
- At Protect Young Eyes they have a saying “wherever the kids are is where the predators are”.
- In the parental reviews that are posted online for LIKEE (there were about 200 between Common Sense Media and appgroves.com) I would estimate that half of the reviews had a warning from parents about:
- Pedophiles/solicitation of minors
- Adult men messaging teenage girls
- Inappropriate images/pornography
- Ability to direct message
- Lack of proper controls, lack of ability to remove an account (Some of these issues may have been addressed)
- Use of location data the make other users aware of physical proximity
Here are comments from adults taken from Common Sense Media about their family experiences with LIKEE:
- “My daughter asked to get on this App. All her friends had it. Within 1 month a sexual predator came into our house and molested her under the guise of “making her a model” “
- “Likee has an SMS that allows private photos and Live video messages .men send unwanted sexual pictures and videos to children, threaten girls into sending sexual pictures.”
- “My daughter had this app and she said she was sent a nude picture from another user.”
- “I have seen child porn on there folks. Straight up child porn. “
- “Is a danger to the kids! There are grown up People trying to take advantage of our kids!I am disgusted!”
- “Your kids WILL be preyed upon. There sre grown men pretending to be children. A man sent a photo of his penis to my TEN YEAR OLD.”
To be clear, this is anecdotal evidence and may not represent your experience or even the average experience. However, if you knew this type of activity COULD take place their location, would you allow your child to be in that location? Obviously not!
It is certainly possible for many of these negative aspects of social media in general and LIKEE to happen on the internet generally and on other apps. The point is that apps such as LIKEE are fertile ground for destructive behaviors and destructive experiences.
From their website:
Likee (formerly LIKE video) is a prominent global short video creation platform, with cutting-edge special effects video shooting and editing tools. Likee was initially released in July 2017 and is now one of the world’s most popular apps. Our mission is to make it easy for everyone to create amazing videos and record memorable moments. We hope that everyone could explore valuable and interesting discoveries, as well as enjoy a wider world. Likee is available for iOS and Android operating systems.
From a Parents Perspective:
Commentary from Common Sense Media:
LIKEE recently added some parental controls that improve the control that parents can have over the use and behavior of the app. If you want some more information about how to activate them, check out this article on Yahoo.
A Short History of LIKEE
Likee is a Singapore-based short video creation and sharing platform, available for iOS and Android operating systems. It was initially introduced in July 2017 by Bigo.
The app makes a feature of special effects video shooting and editing, like 4D Magic, and Dynamic Stickers.
As of the second quarter of 2019, Likee’s mobile monthly active users reached 80.7 million.
On September 30, 2019, it introduced parental controls feature, allowing parents and guardians of Likee’s users to remotely control or restrict access to the content in the app.
In 2017, Likee was rated as one of the Google Play Best Entertainment Application.
The Likee mobile app allows users to create trending videos with a simple tap and become the video star of their social circles with thousands of stickers and Music Magic filters.
Privacy and addiction concerns
As other video apps, Likee is also condemned by the international community for privacy and inappropriate content. People say it could expose children to sexual predators. Because of that, the ‘Enable Parental Controls’ feature on Likee can make sure parents and guardians to control or restrict young users’ access to content in Likee. Also, for teens to avoid inappropriate video; provide viewing environments and content suitable for young people.
Other Reviews, Sources, and Reference:
Review from Common Sense Media
Review from Protect Young Eyes
About the Author:
Terry has been an entrepreneur in the IT industry for over 30 years. Go here to read his complete personal story, “Husband, father, Grandfather and IT Executive.” If you want to send Terry a quick message visit the contact page Here.
If you would like to receive weekly email updates about how to talk to, monitor, and control your child’s digital experience, please join our mailing list below.