The Attorney General for 44 states and courts called on Facebook to stop plans to create a version of Instagram for young children, citing concerns over mental and emotional well-being, risks to online predators and cyberbullying.
In A letter On Monday, Facebook’s chief executive, Mark Zuckerberg, warned prosecutors that social media could be harmful to children and the company had a poor record of protecting children online. Facebook, which Bought instagram in 2012, Currently requires a minimum age of 13 to use their products. According to federal children’s privacy regulations, companies should ask parents for permission to collect data on users under 13 years of age.
Law enforcement officials conducted research to show how the use of social media, including Instagram, a photo-sharing app, has increased mental distress, body image concerns, and even suicidal thoughts. Officials’ letter stated that the children’s version of Instagram is not beyond the company’s business ambitions.
New York Attorney General Letitia James said in a statement, “Without a doubt, this is a dangerous idea that threatens the safety of our children and directly harms them.”. “Facebook has a lot of concerns with this misconception going forward, which is why we are asking the company to drop the launch of Instagram Kids.”
Facebook defended its plans and dug into its heels, saying that the development of children’s version of Instagram would take security and privacy into consideration. It would not show ads on the app, the company swore.
“As every parent knows, children are already online,” Facebook spokesman Andy Stone said in a statement. “We want to improve this situation by providing parents with visibility and control over what their children are doing.”