Advice about key social media platforms and apps
Instagram is a photo and video sharing app that is popular with teens. People on Instagram can connect with one another through comments, captions, reels, stories and hashtags on photos and videos.
Young people use Instagram as a way to engage with their friends, share pictures and videos of their lives or things they like doing, and as a way to share their creativity in stories.
To be eligible to sign up for Instagram, you must be at least 13 years old.
Anyone 13 and older can create an Instagram account by registering an email address and selecting a username.
Instagram’s Safety Centre has advice about what’s okay and not okay on the site, as well as advice about the safety features available.
This includes the Safety Tools section which provides more information about the safety and security essentials.
Facebook is a social network that is popular globally with over a billion users. It has a range of safety features and advice, including advice about how to deal with concerns and how to protect your privacy.
Young people use Facebook to connect with friends or family, to see and share updates and posts, and to follow brands, celebrities and influencers they like.
To be eligible to sign up for Facebook, you must be at least 13 years old.
TikTok is a social media platform that allows users to express themselves through dancing, lip-synching, comedy sketches, makeup tutorials, and by telling stories about their lives in short videos that can be shared with others in the TikTok community. Videos are between 15 seconds and three minutes long. There are also a range of TikTok Influencers who create videos which get viewed millions of times.
13 years +
To sign up for TikTok, you must verify that your age is over 13.
TikTok’s safety centre has advice and guides on the content that is and isn’t allowed on the app. They also provide information on the tools and controls that users can utilise to manage their experience within the app.
Snapchat is a messaging app that is popular with teenagers which allows them to share user-generated photos, texts and videos which only last on screen for a matter of seconds, these are called ‘snaps’.
Once a snap is sent to someone else, it can last on the screen of the receiver for between 1 and 30 seconds before disappearing. Users can also add images or videos to their story for their followers to see for 24 hours.
13 years +
To be eligible to sign up for Snapchat, you must be at least 13 years old.
Snapchat’s safety centre has advice and guides on the content that is and isn’t allowed on the app. They also provide information on the tools and controls that users can utilise to manage their experience within the app.
YouTube is a video-sharing website that is owned by Google. There are a range of safety features such as reporting tools and restricting access to inappropriate content in Safety Mode.
13 years +
In order to create a YouTube account, you must be at least 13 years old.
It is possible to watch videos without registering an account, but you would not be able to post your own videos.
WhatsApp is a free mobile messaging app which allows users to send and receive messages, images and videos to their existing phone contacts, using an internet connection. WhatsApp users can create groups and send messages to lots of their friends at the same time.
WhatsApp is end-to-end encrypted meaning that only the sender and recipient can see the contents of a message.
16 years +
To be eligible to sign up for this service, you must be at least 16 years of age.
Twitter is a social media platform that allows users to communicate in short messages called tweets. Many people use Twitter for news, as well as to follow their friends, favourite celebrities or brands.
13 years +
To sign up for Twitter, you must verify that your age is over 13.
Twitters safety centre has advice and guides on things such as spam, fake accounts, sensitive content and abuse.