Report by jugendschutz.netTikTok pranks with children

Playing pranks on each other is part of social interaction. However, repeatedly comes across pranks on the Internet in which very young children are deliberately put into emotional states of emergency to amuse the community. has compiled information on various pranks of this kind in a new report. We also offer a revised version of our teaching material "Pranks - All just fun??" for download.

For decades, TV shows such as "Verstehen Sie Spaß?" or "MTV Pranked" have been playing pranks on various people. On social media, however, so-called "pranks" take on a new dimension. The pranks are often funny and harmless. However, there are also those in which others, including very young children, are deliberately put into emotional states of emergency for the amusement of the community. Such posts can cause lasting damage to those affected and convey to viewers at least questionable values with regard to social interaction.

Young children as victims of pranks

Poop prank, spider filter prank or ghost filter prank - many "pranks" aim to trigger fear, disgust or confusion in children. For example, video filters are used to trick children into believing that a ghost is in the room or that a spider is crawling over their face. Young children are unable to make sense of these situations and are sometimes very frightened.
What is particularly bad for the victims is that they are usually put in this situation by people they trust. For example, by their own parents or older siblings. Uploading the videos to social media services and video platforms also significantly violates the children's personal rights. Some of these videos are very popular and are widely distributed. As a result, the children are potentially exposed to years of further online ridicule.

The report 'TikTok pranks with children' by sheds light on the depictions of children's emotional states of emergency for entertainment purposes on the TikTok platform.

Revised: "Pranks - All in good fun???"

Our teaching unit "Pranks - Is it all just fun???" encourages pupils to reflect together on which pranks are harmless and where boundaries are crossed. You can download the revised version now.