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Hoop app icon

Hoop

Hoop is an app that lets you add users from around the world through Snapchat. People you don’t know can also request to add you, so we wouldn’t recommend this app for under 18s.

13+

Official age rating

18+

Net Aware age recommendation

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Our safety ratings

Overall safety rating:

Our overall rating for Hoop

Poor

The whole idea of Hoop is for users to ‘make new friends on Snapchat all around the world’. This means it connects you to people you don’t know. If somebody adds your child and they accept, or vice versa, they could be at risk of being sent inappropriate or unwanted messages.

We don't recommend it for under 18s.

Safety features

There are no specific parental controls available on Hoop. However, they do have information about how users can stay safe while using the app and a parent’s guide.

The app is rated 13+ but in Hoop’s Terms and Conditions they state that users under the age of 18 must have parental permission to use the app.

Hoop does state that users 13-17 can’t be contacted by people over the age of 18. However, they don’t use an appropriate age-verification tool and it’s easy to input a different date of birth. This means that your child could be at risk of speaking to an adult they haven’t met before.

 

Privacy & location

Hoop don’t share your location with anyone on the app and they do not share your Snapchat username automatically with other users.

However, the whole point of Hoop is to connect you with other users on Snapchat. There is a risk your child could be sent a request by someone they don’t know who will then be able to see their Snapchat posts.

Reporting & blocking

Users can report inappropriate content or block another user directly in the app by tapping on the user’s profile. Hoop say they review all report requests within 34 hours.

Content

We didn’t come across anything inappropriate while exploring the app. However, because Hoop connects you with people you don’t know, there is a chance your child could be sent something inappropriate or that might not be suitable for them.

Hoop say they use human moderators to prevent users from posting inappropriate content. However, there is no guarantee this will prevent this type of content from being shared.

O2 Guru top tip

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Click the flag icon to report other users

If you see something inappropriate on someone’s profile, use the flag icon to report them.

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Top tips for staying safe

Hoop lets you connect with other users on Snapchat from around the world. This means you can talk to people you don’t know, either individually or in groups.

We don’t think this feature is appropriate for under 18s because it means children could be at a higher risk of being sent something inappropriate or talking someone they don’t know.

Take your child through Childline’s staying safe online page so you can talk about the risks and how to stay safe.

It’s important to remember that risks online can come from people you know as well as people you don’t but this feature doesn’t seem safe.

You might want to explore our Net Aware reviews to help find an app, site or game that might be more suitable for your child. Here are some things you might want to look out for:

• Age ratings
• Parental controls
• Chat features

Hoop is all about adding new friends on Snapchat. That’s why we also recommend exploring Snapchat with your child.

Talk about about what’s good to share on Snapchat and what’s best to keep private. And go through Snapchat’s safety features together.

Read our Snapchat review for top tips on staying safe.

Help your child think about what they share online and who sees it. Compare it to what they would be happy to share offline.

Use examples that are easy for them to understand: “You shouldn't give your number to somebody you don't know on the street. Is somebody online you don't know any different?”

Listen to their answers. And be positive and encouraging.

Remind them that they shouldn’t share private things, such as:

  • personal information, like names, emails, phone numbers, location and school names
  • other people's personal information
  • links to join private group chats
  • photos of themselves
  • photos of their body, such as sexual photos or videos.

Your child might come across an inappropriate or upsetting profile on Hoop. If they do, show them how to report the profile by selecting the flag icon in the top right corner.

Remind your child they can talk to you about anything they’ve seen. Or they can talk to another adult they trust, like a teacher, or a Childline counsellor.

Other users can send ‘Snap requests’ on Hoop. This means they want to become a Snapchat friend.

On the request, you can decline or block users instead of adding them.

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Talking to your child

Having open, regular conversations with your child will help you to really understand and explore the online world together. Our tips and advice can help you start these conversations.

Talk about staying safe online

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