Facebook has been asked by the US State Attorneys General to cancel any plans of releasing Instagram for the kid’s version of the app shortly. A Facebook spokesperson had earlier stated about the company researching a possible new version of the app that was meant for kids. The official letter to Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Facebook states “Use of social media can be detrimental to the health and well-being of children,”
In the past, the Facebook Messenger app for kids has been reported to consist of a design flaw resulting in Facebook unable to protect the welfare of the children using its platform historically speaking. Facebook, on the other hand, has assured that the new version of Instagram of kids will be for children under the age of 13 and will not display any advertisements.
Around 40 state attorneys general have sent a letter on Monday to the Facebook chief urging him to cancel the launch of Instagram for children. This letter was personally signed by attorneys from the District of Columbia and three other US territories which include Newyork, Kentucky, Ohio, Utah, and Kentucky, etc. Here are excerpts from the letter sent:
“Use of social media can be detrimental to the health and well-being of children, who are not equipped to navigate the challenges of having a social media account,”
“it appears that Facebook is not responding to a need, but instead creating one”.
“is a shameful attempt to exploit and profit off vulnerable people”.
Further, the letter also stated that Facebook’s Messenger Kids app was flawed as it allowed children between the ages of 6 to 12 to bypass the restrictions and interact with anyone online. It also allowed kids to join chat groups with unanimous people that were restricted by parents in the first place.
Facebook has assured that the all-new Instagram for kids will prioritize safety and privacy measures. They have also started to consult child development experts for advice on safety for children and mental health.