Lifestyle, Social Media
Is Lemon8 Safe for Kids? A Lemon8 App Review for Parents
Depending on when you’re reading this, your news feed may be swimming with the 2023 TikTok hearings where Congress has been questioning TikTok on its potential dangers, including the harms children are facing on the app. Some are even calling for a TikTok ban in the U.S. — but TikTok’s parent company, ByteDance, seems to have a backup plan.
ByteDance has rolled out its own version of Instagram with an app called Lemon8, a “lifestyle” platform where people can share their love of food, wellness, fashion, traveling, and more. While the interface is essentially a duplicate of TikTok, the content has been described as a mix of Instagram and Pinterest.
Lemon8 seems to be finding its way into our social media feeds more and more, so we figured it was time to give parents a solid review! We’ll go over content, safety, and more — let’s jump in!
Harmful Content 😲
So far, the app seems centered around specific topics such as health, travel, and beauty. Lemon8 is attempting to replicate Instagram’s successful paid influencer content, so just imagine the perfectly edited and curated posts of an Instagram ad, and that’s basically the majority of Lemon8’s content.
Researching the app did not turn up any harmful content such as inappropriate sexual posts, violent or hate speech, or excessive profanity. This could be due to the fact that the app is relatively new and it’s rumored that many of the users are influencers being paid by ByteDance to post this specific content. This could change later down the line as more “regular” people start using it and post whatever they wish.
As of right now, the only way to communicate with other users on Lemon8 is through public comments on posts. There is no direct messaging feature — usually our number one red flag for potential predation. It’s possible, however, that users could exchange links to other social media or messaging platforms through comments, though.
Positive Value 💙
If your child loves to stay up to date on the latest fashion trends or they are always on the hunt for a new morning smoothie recipe, they could really enjoy Lemon8! It’s always fun to explore interests in a new way. And while Lemon8 is very similar to Instagram, some of the differences may give it a leg-up. The interface, for example, has no vertical scrolling — meaning you won’t be fed post after post. You have to actually tap into each post to view it.
Lemon8 does not allow you to make your account private — whatever you post will be public no matter what. However, similar to TikTok, Lemon8 will save the posts you either like or save on your profile so you can go back to them later. These “liked posts” or “saved posts” can be made private from other users, and the app actually defaults to have these hidden upon downloading.
Additionally, the app allows you to link your other social media accounts as well as your phone number, which we would strongly discourage allowing your child to do if they use Lemon8. This could prevent strangers who find your child on Lemon8 from jumping to other platforms to communicate with them privately.
Parental Controls ✅
There are no parental controls for Lemon8, so if your child uses it you’ll have to keep a close eye on their activity to ensure they use it safely.
But of course, Bark can lend a helping hand! With Bark, you can:
- Block Lemon8 entirely, if needed.
- Manage when your kid can use Lemon8 throughout the day.
Bark is a comprehensive online safety solution that empowers families to monitor content, manage screen time, and filter websites to help protect their kids online. Our mission is to give parents and guardians the tools they need to raise kids in the digital age.