What is Wattpad? Parent App Guide

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February 6, 2017

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What is Wattpad?

  • A relatively unmoderated online storytelling community
  • Users write and share their stories on Wattpad
  • Users like and comment on other users’ stories
  • While writers are encouraged to rate their stories, many stories are unrated

Why should parents care?

  • The majority of Wattpad’s content is mature
  • Teens are posting explicit and inappropriate stories that are connected to their personal Facebook profiles (and shows their profile photo)
  • Users can embed inappropriate images and videos into their stories
  • Wattpad can be a predatory site since readers have access to writers’ personal Facebook profiles and email addresses
  • The app also has private messaging capabilities

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This app is listed in the SmartSocial.com Green Zone.
This app is not safe for students to use unsupervised, but a Green Zone app can serve a positive purpose to help a student to navigate social media and someday build an online brand. Read more below to find out why this app is in the Green Zone.

This app is listed in the SmartSocial.com Gray Zone.
Gray Zone apps often contain lots of private & disappearing messages, and strangers can use this to chat with students. Parents should participate in these apps with students to keep them safe. This zone can be a great place for family time since many of these apps can be entertaining, and let your students express themselves. Read more below to find out why this app is in the Gray Zone.

This app is listed in the SmartSocial.com Red Zone.
Red Zone apps often have lots of anonymous features, adult content, and easy contact with strangers. Supervision is strongly suggested on each of these apps or move your kids to a safer zone. All apps require parental supervision, these apps more than others. Read more below to find out why this app is in the Red Zone or view our list of 100+ Apps to find a safer app with your student.
Join our weekly newsletter to learn about the 100+ app reviews at SmartSocial.com

This trend is categorized as a Dangerous Social Media Challenge.
Viral challenges encourage students to do dangerous things to garner likes, views, attention, and subscribers. These challenges can be found across several social networks and may encourage students to perform dangerous activities. SmartSocial.com keeps parents updated on these social media challenges before an incident may occur in your community.

Table of Contents

Parent & educator training video

What is  Wattpad?

Wattpad is a relatively unmoderated online storytelling community.
Wattpad app logo
  • A relatively unmoderated online storytelling community
  • Users write and share their stories on Wattpad
  • Users like and comment on other users’ stories
  • While writers are encouraged to rate their stories, many stories are unrated

Wattpad stories fall into 2 rating categories:

  • Mature - Content intended for readers 17+
  • For Everyone - Content that is appropriate for all ages

Wattpad statistics

  • There 45 million Wattpad users
  • 30 minutes is the average amount spent on Wattpad per session
  • 80% of users are under the age of 30

Wattpad in the news

There’s a danger of exploitation when the writers are so young and Wattpad is acting as their agent. The Washington Post
"There’s a danger of exploitation when the writers are so young and Wattpad is acting as their agent.” The Washington Post
“Nearly a third of the writings are unrated, and some decidedly explicit stuff shows up [on Wattpad].” Common Sense Media

What do parents say?

Teens can easily find inappropriate content [on Wattpad] plus they can message each other including likely predators.
  • “Loads of inappropriate content -  Teens can easily find inappropriate content plus they can message each other including likely predators.” -Mom of Teen
  • “I discovered my 14-year-old daughter was writing stories on this app that were sexually explicit, totally inappropriate, and publicly shared. The app connected to her Facebook profile, which, while totally locked down, still shows her profile picture, which at times is a photograph of her.” -Mom of Teen

Why should parents care?

Wattpad can be a predatory site since readers have access to writers’ personal Facebook profiles and email addresses.
  • The majority of Wattpad’s content is mature
  • Teens are posting explicit and inappropriate stories that are connected to their personal Facebook profiles (and shows their profile photo)
  • Users can embed inappropriate images and videos into their stories
  • Wattpad can be a predatory site since readers have access to writers’ personal Facebook profiles and email addresses
  • The app also has private messaging capabilities

What can parents do?

Consider alternative ways your teen can share their creative writing publicly.
  • Consider alternative ways your teen can share their creative writing publicly
  • Discuss the types of content that are appropriate for your teen to encounter online and teach them to avoid inappropriate content in your absence

If your teen is interested in creative writing or reading:

  • Encourage your student to start journaling in a notebook
  • Plan a trip to the bookstore, together, so your teen can pick out books you’ve approved

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