A Guide To musical.ly

If you have a teen in the house, you’ve probably heard about musical.ly. I’ve likened it to Dubsmashbut my sources inform me that it’s better than the Dub. Let’s take a look:

musical.ly works in a similar way to Dubsmash, in that it involves music and some lipsyncing, but it takes on a far more community-oriented approach. Moreover, in my opinion, the technology works a little more fluidly, and the range of tunes available is a little more exciting than the voice-over options Dubsmash offers. musical.ly is more of a personalised music video generator, with a now-large community of content creators. It’s fun lies in the lipsyncing and, of course, connecting with friends and people online.


This mobile application is full of fun, but there are definitely a few things to watch out for (note – most of these are concerns for other social network apps too): 

1. Inappropriate language – keep your ears peeled for some inappropriate language in the songs listed and shared.

2. By default, profiles are set to public, meaning that anyone can view videos

3. Run through those rules about location sharing and the like again. I noticed a large number of kids sharing their school details in their profiles. 

4. Adult content – as always, there is more adult-oriented content posted to the app and, worse still, hashtags make it super simple to click through and explore content related to a particular hashtag. I can’t find any way to restrict access to this, which is a little disappointing. There is a reporting mechanism you can use to report unsuitable content. Watch who your kids follow, who follows them and their interactions. I’d recommend this app as one you use and explore with your child and please remember: there are terms and conditions that also cover age restrictions.

5. Messaging – there is a private messaging system and I’m not completely satisfied with the security of it. There is, however, a good guide over here that goes into this aspect a little more deeply and covers most of what I’ve listed above. 

6. Lastly, prepare for a lot of duckface and ‘cool’ posing. 

musical.ly can be downloaded here:







Cath Jenkin

As a mom, Cath raises her daughter with a strong focus on technology, as she believes that digital literacy is as important as learning to read. With a long history of creating content for online and print publications, and in particular as a parenting columnist, Cath brings her curious mind... Read more

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