What is Instagram Reels?
Reels is “Instagram’s attempt to keep you away from TikTok.” You add music and effects to videos – it’s almost that simple.
Here’s Instagram’s own announcements: Introducing Instagram Reels
Here are various articles talking about the Reels release:
- The Verge: Instagram Launches Reels. Its Attempt to Keep you off TikTik
- Tech Crunch: Instagram Reels launches globally in over 50 countries, including US
- Wired: Instagram Launches Reels, Its TikTok Clone, in the US
What do parents need to know about Reels?
Reels isn’t a separate app. If your child has Instagram then she/he has Reels. This new feature is part of the Instagram camera and you can search videos directly in the Explore tab, as you can see in this video (yes, Will Smith is already posting videos):
Parents! Please find 15 minutes and read our extremely detailed Instagram App Review in order to understand all of Instagram’s risks and other features. Over one billion people use Instagram every month! There’s a pretty good chance that with so many humans already using Instagram, that Reels is here to stay.
Additionally, Reels is going to bring with it all of the dopamine reward-driven compulsions that come with TikTok and kids wanting to be famous. For some, it’s corrosive to their mental health. Amazing child advocates like Collin Kartchner have hundreds and hundreds of DM’s from kids who have confided in him about what TikTok, Snapchat, and Instagram have done to their mental health. It’s heartbreaking.
Does this mean that every kid is going to ruin their lives on Reels? Absolutely not! But if you had hard feelings about TikTok, then you should have those same feelings for this feature.
Related post: What’s the Right Age to Give my Kid Social Media?
Ready to monitor social media? Then it’s time for Bark.
Bark monitors more social media platforms than anyone. Although Apple makes it difficult to monitor Instagram (and the Reels feature) on iPhones, Bark can send an alert when new apps are downloaded. And, they cover plenty of other apps that kids love, including texts, chat, email, YouTube, and 24+ social media platforms for signs of cyberbullying, suicidal ideation, adult content, and more.
Parents and guardians don’t have to read every message — instead, they’ll get alerts only when there’s a potential issue. Sign up today for a free, one-week trial!
*There are affiliate links throughout this post because we’ve tested and trust a small list of parental control solutions. Our work saves you time! If you decide that you agree with us, then we may earn a small commission, which does nothing to your price. Enjoy!
Chris McKenna, Founder: A man with never ending energy when it comes to fighting for the safety and protection of children. Chris practices his internet safety tips on his four amazing children and is regularly featured on news, radio, and podcasts for his research. His 2019 US Senate Judiciary Committee testimony was the catalyst for draft legislation and on-going discussion that could radically change online child protection laws and earned PYE the NCOSE Dignity Defense Alert Award in 2020. The PYE team has performed over 1,300 presentations at schools, churches, and nonprofits and was featured in the Childhood 2.0 movie. When not leading PYE, Chris is the Digital Marketing Manager for Covenant Eyes. Other loves include running, spreadsheets, nature, and candy.