Is noplace safe for kids? A safety guide to Gen Z’s latest social network

what is the noplace app and is it safe for kids

The year is 2004. After sitting through the melodic beeps and whirrs of dial-up, you open up Internet Explorer, ready to cultivate your personality online by choosing the right 30-second sample of your favorite song and reshuffling your top 8 friends of the moment. You’ve guessed it – you’re in your MySpace era, when social networking was simpler, and just more…social. 

Fast forward 20 years, and the history of social networking has come full circle. The latest offering, noplace, feels like a newer, refreshed, Gen Z version of MySpace, effortlessly intertwining the classic elements of friend rankings and what’s on your current playlist, with a shiny public text-based feed and gamified level-up features. It’s free, fun, and fresh, but is it here to stay? And most importantly, is it safe for younger teens to use?

What is noplace?

noplace, originally named nospace, is a new social app designed with Gen Z in mind. The app’s highly customizable profiles and feed-based communication curate an environment that nospace pitch as making “social media social again”. Launched as an “invite-only” app by founder and “gen z whisperer” Tiffany Zhong, nospace quickly gained viral popularity, and was fully launched to the public in July 2024 as an iOS-only download.

What can you do on noplace?

noplace feels like a hybrid of MySpace and pre-Elon Twitter, before image and video updates ever existed. The feed, separated by posts from friends and global updates, is text only, allowing users to share their current thoughts and feelings – much like the 3rd person “Rachael is…” days of Facebook nobody wants to relive. 

noplace has these key features: 

  1. A customizable profile including different colors, designs, and interests (stars ⭐). There is also a status section allowing you to select the current song you’re listening to, book you’re reading, or what you’re eating. 
  2. A real-time feed, divided by friends list and global users. Through the “posts” feature, you can upload a post to the feed, and other users can respond or boost your post by tapping and holding it for several seconds. There are no likes, shares, or view statistics.
  3. A top 10 friends list, allowing you to rank and display your current “besties”.
  4. AI technology, offering personalized content and suggestions. noplace also uses AI to summarize what you’ve missed while the app was closed, catching you up with a quick overview. 
  5. A gamified experience: the more you use the app, the higher you climb, unlocking levels as you post and interact, use custom features, and boost other people’s posts. 
is the noplace app safe

Why do people like noplace?

The simplicity of the Y2K internet is going through somewhat of a revival, and despite the fact that Gen Z weren’t the ones to live through it, they seem to be feeling nostalgia for everything from 2000s fashion to early internet trends. noplace is tapping into this, marketing the platform as a social media experience with “Y2K vibes”, offering Gen Z the chance to go back to a simpler time they never had online

noplace connects users through shared interests, and focuses on text posts that imitate conversation, encouraging us to join the conversation, rather than view videos and images passively like we might on TikTok or Instagram. The customizable and interactive elements of the app are also appealing, giving an experience that feels less curated, and more organic. 

Is noplace safe for kids?

While noplace might sound like an interesting space, connecting like-minded people over interests instead of displaying the new normal of visual, trend-hungry feeds on social media, there are some red flags to watch for. 

Some safety concerns we have about noplace include:

  • No private profiles: all user profiles are public and anyone can see and befriend you.
  • A global public feed, where users can post whatever they like (as long as it’s text-based) in real time. noplace does moderate this feed, but that doesn’t mean inappropriate or concerning messages can’t slip through the cracks. 
  • noplace is designed for users aged 13+, but all you have to do is enter your date of birth (like any social media application) to set up a profile and start browsing.
  • Chat features: users can DM one another through chats, and as all profiles are public, that means anyone, anywhere, can contact your teen. 
  • Gamification: while rewards and leveling up are a good way to keep users active and motivate them to keep using apps, these engagement tactics can be addictive, tapping into the small dopamine hits that surge every time we get a reward.
  • Data collection: like most free services, noplace collects and stores user data, and if linking associated accounts through Google, Facebook, or X, noplace can collect third-party data such as name, social activity, and contact lists.

Qustodio’s final recommendation on noplace

All social media apps come with their own set of risks, but with newer, more experimental platforms, the risk is higher as they haven’t been tried and tested for long, and the pitfalls aren’t always as apparent. noplace has also enjoyed a viral launch period, meaning users in their thousands are flocking to the new social app to try it out, converse, and connect. 

For younger users this is problematic – apps like noplace put them in direct contact with strangers, and without the option to create a private profile, your child could be talking to anyone in the world, no matter their age or interests. 

We’d exercise caution and encourage children not to use new and untested social media applications until the age of 16. 

If your child is interested in downloading any new social media app, we’d recommend testing it out first, to make sure you’re comfortable with the way the application works and the content they may be exposed to. If social media is your concern, you can take other measures to help keep your children’s devices safe – parental control tools such as Qustodio allow you to block and restrict the use of social media apps like noplace, set healthy time limits to ensure balanced consumption, and introduce restricted times which stop your child from scrolling whenever they please, such as at night. 

By fostering healthy device use, and keeping up regular conversation with your child about their online interests and how they make use of tech, you’ll help to make their social media experience balanced and age-appropriate, while setting them up to become positive, healthier users of these applications in the future.

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