Last month, Montana banned the use of TikTok. Now, another app called Zigazoo has opened up for all ages.
Its founder says it's a nontoxic social media alternative. Bella Basque is a content creator on TikTok, Instagram, and now Zigazoo. She says other creators on Zigazoo are supportive.
“I don't have to worry about any trolls or anything like that. It's just amazing," Basque said, "Everyone supports everyone on this app, like some of the creators who I've never even met in person, they follow me. We support each other online.”
Zak Ringelstein started Zigazoo in the middle of the pandemic as a way for his kids to communicate. It started as just a children's app, but since May 31, has expanded to all ages.
“I have three boys, my wife and I were trying to figure out what to do with our three boys during the pandemic," Ringelstein said. "And there were, unfortunately, not a lot of great places for kids to connect during that time, which we thought was a travesty. We wanted to give our kids at least a way to connect in a healthy way."
Zigazoo is backed by companies like the NBA and WWE for promoting a nontoxic form of social media by verifying every user is a human and ethical algorithm.
“We do moderation," Ringelstein said. "We don't believe in censorship of ideas, but we do believe that things should be moderated, some especially for different age groups and making sure it's age and developmentally appropriate.”
As well as not allowing toxic comments and only video responses to help reduce negativity.
“I was struggling with a bit of negative comments and when I got the invite to Zigazoo, I wanted to try it out, but what really kind of sealed the deal with me was their anti-bullying and their positive platform,” Basque said.
Ringelstein says, “You're held much more accountable when, for example, you have to look at yourself in the screen and say something.”
For Bella, her transition to the app has been so far so good.
“I've been on it for a couple of weeks now and so far I really like it,” Basque said.