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TikTok goes hard on the #UsheratiKE lives that flooded the app

TikTok has just announced an update to its Community Guidelines, which includes some of the toughest rules yet.

This will affect the #UsheratiKe live sessions where TikTokers would urge people to purchase explicit content.

The guidelines state: “Do not post, upload, stream, or share: Content that depicts, promotes, or glorifies sexual solicitation, including offering or asking for sexual partners, sexual chats or imagery, sexual services, premium sexual content, or sexcamming.”

Also read: Wee hours when TikTok content becomes ‘sexually explicit’ in Kenya

There was also a growing community of users who binge-watch Mukbang. It is not clear if that, too, will be on the chopping board.

According to the new guidelines, “Content that promotes unhealthy eating behaviors or habits that are likely to cause adverse health outcomes is not allowed on the platform. This includes content expressing desire for an eating disorder, sharing tips or coaching on disordered eating, and participation in unhealthy body measurement challenges.”

It warns against posting, streaming, or sharing “Content that depicts, promotes, normalizes, or glorifies disordered eating.”

The food challenge trend on TikTok is similar to a type of video content that originated in South Korea called “mukbang.”

Mukbang combines the Korean words for “eating” and “broadcast”.

In Kenya, the adoption of the trend is slower. At the moment, very few Kenyan content creators on TikToker have gone viral attempting this trend.

One of them is Steve K, who has a huge following and enjoys videos of him eating Kenyan-centric cuisine. He has amassed a following of over 78K people.

Kenyan TikTokers Mercy Waringa famed for the mukbang trend in Nairobi.
Kenyan TikTokers Mercy Waringa is famed for the mukbang trend in Nairobi.

Another one is Mercy Waringa, who also specializes in weird food choices like cow hoofs, millet ugali, fufu, among others. She has a following of over 15K people on her TikTok profile.

The two always direct traffic back to their YouTube channels, where their content is monetized.

Read all about it here: Viral gluttony? Mukbang is becoming a popular trend with Kenyan TikTok

The social media giant has taken unprecedented steps toward transparency by sharing its Community Principles for the first time.

These principles are based on upholding human rights and international legal frameworks, guiding how the company moderates content.

TikTok consulted with over 100 organizations worldwide and listened to their community to inform these new guidelines.

This feedback helped them strengthen their rules and respond to new threats and potential harms. Among the updates is an advancement in rules for how synthetic media is treated, the addition of ‘tribe’ as a protected attribute in their hate speech policies, and more detail about their work to protect civic and election integrity.

The updated Community Guidelines, which went into effect on April 21st, are organized thematically into different topic areas, such as Behavioral & Mental Health.

Also read: Kenyan woman on TikTok shreds mistresses for ruining lives of mubabaz’ families

For each area, TikTok explains what they don’t allow and then provides more detailed information about definitions and potential actions.

They also laid out their four pillars of moderation, which include removing violative content, age-restricting mature content, making inappropriate content ineligible for a recommendation, and empowering the community with information and resources.

TikTok’s new guidelines are a step forward for human rights, safety, and transparency. The company’s commitment to fairness, protecting human dignity, and balancing freedom of expression with preventing harm is commendable.

They are investing in their work to keep their platform a safe, inclusive, and authentic home for their global community. TikTok believes everyone deserves to feel safe online and will continue to work towards this goal.

Also read: 43 sacked Facebook moderators sue Meta in Kenya