What to do if TikTok messages not working? 10 ways to fix the problem

TikTok has strict guidelines to protect users from online bullying and harassment through personal messages (Image via TikTok/Facebook and @Xavier Lorenzo/Getty Images)
TikTok has strict guidelines to protect users from online bullying and harassment through personal messages (Image via TikTok/Facebook and @Xavier Lorenzo/Getty Images)

Millions of people use TikTok every day, some for business and others for entertainment. The app has everything a social media platform needs, which is why the TikTok community has seen such major growth over the last few years.

The app is not supposed to be a messaging platform, but it does have a DM feature for users to connect and share information. However, a user might see an "unable to send" or a red exclamation sign beside their DM every once in a while.

There are many reasons why this could be happening and this article is going to delve into it. The article will also provide some ways to fix the problem of a stuck DM.


Ways to fix the TikTok DM problem

The app has a rigorous policy for minor safety. If you are under 16, TikTok will not allow you to send or receive DMs. This is usually bypassed by creating a new account with a fake age, but we advise readers against it. Given the amount of bullying, injuries, and fatalities in the last few years, the DM restriction is an important and useful feature.

Sometimes, the app can have a server crash or update. During this time, sending a DM becomes impossible. In this situation, the only thing to do is wait for the app to get fixed.

However, sometimes the error occurs from the user's side. They can fix the issue with a few simple steps.

1) Restart the app

For some reason, "did you restart it?" has become a meme for fixing things, but only because the advice works most of the time.

Restarting the app forces it to refresh, which can sometimes fix the problem. If a user can't see a post they uploaded or a text they sent, restarting the app can help. Often, the app completes the task but cannot update it on display and restarting fixes that.

To restart, go to your phone's home page, open the window that shows all the running apps, and close TikTok.


2) Check your internet connection

TikTok is a video-sharing app and needs a fairly good internet connection to run smoothly. A slow or inconsistent connection can cause the app to lag or show errors in completing a task, like sending a text or posting a comment. So make sure to have a smooth and fast internet connection for an uninterrupted experience.


3) Verify your phone number

The app has made it mandatory to have a verified phone number connected to your account to send text messages through TikTok. If you do not have it verified through the app, it will not let you connect to other users through DMs.

Here are the steps to check your verification status:

  1. Go to your profile and click on the Options button
  2. Now select Manage account and select Phone Number
  3. Then choose your region and enter your phone number. Remember, the numbers should be with you at this time.
  4. TikTok will send a code to the number. Just enter it to complete the verification.

4) Message other users

Sometimes the person you are sending the DM to could be facing issues with their account, barring them from receiving text through the app. In this case, DM other users on the app to check if the problem is truly from your side.


5) Check privacy settings

Tiktok has a setting that limits who can send a personal text. If a user limits who can send them a text, the person will not receive texts from the restricted audience. To receive a text from your friend, look at the privacy settings and check the "who can send you direct messages" option. The app has three options for the settings:

  • Noone
  • Friends
  • Everyone

If you can't send a text to your friends, ask them to check their settings.


6) Check if the post has been deleted

Sometimes a deleted post continues to show on the app, but sharing it through DMs will end in error. If such a problem arises, go to the person's profile and refresh the app. If the video has been deleted, it will disappear from the list. The same will happen while replying to a deleted comment.


7) Has the user blocked you or deleted their account?

Whenever a user blocks someone, they will be unable to connect with the said user or send them any DM. They will also be unable to access the other person's account, but the old DMs in the text list will not disappear. The same happens if the person's account is deactivated, deleted, or banned from the app.


8) Try updating the app

Often, users forget to update the app, which causes it to malfunction. So, checking its status in the app store can be helpful for some. If the app needs an update, click on the update and check back to see if the problem continues.


9) Reinstall the app

If you have gone through all the abovementioned steps and still can't fix the problem, try reinstalling the app. Sometimes the app downloaded by you could have had an unknown glitch. Reinstalling it can fix that problem.


10) Connect with the TikTok support team

After exhausting all your options, you can connect directly to the help center within the app or through other social media platforms. To fix the issue within the app, we would advise you to connect through the app, and if your account has been locked and by any chance you cannot access your profile, you can mail the company on the email id [email protected] or tag them on Twitter.

Remember that all these solutions will only work if the problem is unintentional and due to technical issues. If the app has suspended your account from sending DMs or posting comments, you must contact the app or wait out your suspension time. Also, follow the community guidelines for a fun and unproblematic experience.

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Edited by Srijan Sen