Thursday, February 22, 2024

Search

State Co-Leads Study into Instagram’s Harms

instagram

By From the New Jersey Attorney General

TRENTON – Acting Attorney General Andrew J. Bruck announced New Jersey is co-leading a nationwide investigation into whether the social media platform Instagram is violating state consumer protection laws and putting children, teenagers and young adults at risk by inducing them to use the platform in ways that are potentially harmful to them. 
Among other things, the investigation is centered on techniques employed by Instagram’s parent company Meta Platforms, Inc. (formerly known as Facebook) to increase both the frequency and duration of engagement by young users, and on the potential harms that may result from such extended engagement. 
As New Jersey and other states noted in a letter to Facebook earlier this year, in which the states urged Meta to scrap plans for an under-age-13 version of Instagram, emerging research suggests a nexus between increased time spent online by young persons – particularly on social media platforms – and such ill effects as depression, anxiety, isolation, body image issues, cyber-bullying, eating disorders, and sleeplessness, among others.
“Parents are anxious about the effects of social media on their children’s wellbeing, and understandably so,” stated Bruck. “We must ensure that social media platforms are not violating our laws or exposing our youth to mental and physical harms. And if we learn that companies like Meta knew that their products were harmful and tried to get kids hooked on them anyway, or otherwise violated our laws, we will take strong and aggressive action. That’s why a nationwide coalition is investigating, and that’s why I am proud New Jersey is taking a leadership role.”
The announcement follows recent reports revealing that Meta’s own internal research shows that using Instagram is associated with increased risks of physical and mental health harms on young people, including depression, eating disorders, and even suicide.
New Jersey has long been concerned about the negative impacts of social media platforms on New Jersey’s residents. In May, as highlighted above, the New Jersey Attorney General’s Office was part of a bipartisan coalition of 44 Attorneys General that urged Facebook to abandon its plans to launch a version of Instagram for children under the age of 13.
The Instagram investigation announced today involves a broad group of states across the country. In addition to Acting Attorney General Bruck, the bipartisan coalition of Attorneys General leading the investigation includes Attorneys General from Nebraska, Massachusetts, California, Florida, Kentucky, Tennessee, and Vermont.

Read More

Spout Off

Cape May – As an independent who supported Democrat and Republican Presidents, I say Biden needs to step down. He doesn't have the physical and mental strength for another four years.Every time George W….

Read More

Lower Township – A Chinese car manufacturer wants to build a Chinese car factory in Mexico. I hope everybody recognizes the significance of that, but the realist in me says probably not. A proper education system in…

Read More

Cape May Court House – It's been 2 plus years since I reported a pole light out to Atlantic City Electric on their web site. I have called 3 time in those 27 months and received the same answer every time. They are…

Read More

Most Read

Print Edition

Recommended Articles

Skip to content