Unraveling the Relationship between Content Quality, Design, and User Engagement in Douyin's Adolescent Mode

Zhiyu Li, Chuqi Wang


In recent years, short video social platforms have garnered widespread attention, with Douyin (the Chinese version of TikTok) being a typical representative. The daily active users of the teen segment in Douyin are estimated to exceed 42 million. However, there still exists a certain blind spot in the research of Douyin's teen-specific content. This study conducts a content analysis of 360 short videos in Douyin's adolescent mode, and employs a Structural Equation Model (SEM) to analyze the relationships between the content quality, design features, learning objectives, age appropriateness, and user engagement. The results reveal that age appropriateness and learning objectives have a significant positive impact on content quality, and content quality and design features significantly positively impact user engagement. Further discussions point out that Douyin's adolescent mode faces challenges in dealing with issues like gender bias and algorithm bias, which may have adverse effects on the holistic development of teen users. The research findings provide empirical evidence for short video creators and platform optimization, and put forward targeted suggestions for the design of short video content in adolescent mode.

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.11114/smc.v11i7.6401


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Studies in Media and Communication      ISSN 2325-8071 (Print)   ISSN 2325-808X (Online)

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