The GIPHY App Looks Fun. Is it Safe?
A complete app review for parents.
What is the GIPHY App?
Description: The GIPHY App is an entire library of GIFs (short, looping videos) and stickers that are easily accessed via phone. It lets users search any number of topics, categories, and phrases and will display a wide selection of GIFs, animated stickers, and Emojis for the perfect reaction or conversation starter whether via iMessage, Facebook Messenger, Instagram, or other social media channels.
Corporate website: https://giphy.com/
Category: Photo & Video
APP Store rating: 17+ due to
- Infrequent/Mild Mature/Suggestive Themes
- Infrequent/Mild Horror/Fear Themes
- Infrequent/Mild Profanity or Crude Humor
- Infrequent/Mild Cartoon or Fantasy Violence
- Unrestricted Web Access (this is key)
- Infrequent/Mild Alcohol, Tobacco, or Drug Use or References
What do Parents Need to Know About GIPHY?
GIPHY is more than just gifs! It now includes 30-second short-form videos.
GIPHY is fun. GIFs can be hilarious. The app can be a fun way to communicate with friends without actually using words! There are a lot of fun and silly GIFs out there along with cool animated stickers.
Lots of creative people have made conversing digitally more entertaining for all of us with the use of GIPHY. The comedy factor is a big draw for a lot of users who enjoy using humor as they dialogue.
GIPHY allows easy access to inappropriate content. Sexualized content and crude humor is everywhere. GIFs are tagged, which includes “sexy,” “girls,” “naked,” “booty” and others.
Although we didn’t find any pornographic GIFs in the app, it does include the source website on each GIF. This means easy navigation to Reddit, Imgur, and other mature websites without ever leaving the app. This is the “unrestricted web access” that earns the app its 17+ rating.
Related post: 3 Reasons to Turn off the App Store
GIPHY Arcade. Microgames (think games like what used to be on old flip phones) can be created and played at arcade.giphy.com (not available on the app…yet). Games are customized by the type of game, background, characters, and music. GIPHY is monetizing the new feature as well (Wendy’s nuggets are an option for your game’s hero).
The bottom line: Is the GIPHY app safe for kids?
This app is rated 17+ in the app store for a reason! It would be good for parents, with kids under 18, to be aware if their kids have the app and discuss how they’re using it. Are you curious how to find apps that might be hidden on your child’s phone? Here’s how to discover if GIPHY might be hiding somewhere on your child’s smart device:
- For an iPhone: go to the App Store app, select “Updates” in the lower right corner, then tap “Purchases” at the top, and this will show a complete inventory of every app that has been downloaded from the App Store with the Apple ID that the device is using.
- For Android: open the Google Play store app and tap the menu button (three lines). In the menu, tap My apps & games to see a list of apps currently installed on your device.