A letter from the National Association of Attorneys General (NAAG) is urging Facebook to abandon its plans to create an Instagram platform aimed for kids under the age of 13. The group is citing numerous concerns about the safety and wellbeing of children using the platform and the harm that can be done to unprepared children being on social media.
The Attorney General from 44 states have signed the waiver after two months of a report mentioning that Facebook was in the early stages of creating the new social media. The plans are not yet official and numerous politicians are pushing for the plans to be abandoned far before that point.
The letter references Facebook’s already poor reputation at protecting children from damaging content and users on their current platforms. It also brings up a survey completed in 2017 that found 42 percent of young Instagram users experienced cyberbullying and that Instagram was the most common platform for young users to be cyberbullied on out of the platforms researched.
While it seems very few disagree with the findings and focus of this letter and its intentions to protect children, a quite common counter point is that children under the age of 13 are already finding ways to use “adult Instagram” and a child safe version may protect those children much better than the adult version. Although it is also worth noting that Facebook has been seen as lacking in addressing these already known issues and that does lead to doubts about a new platform.