Advocacy group urges Zuckerberg to cancel plans to launch Instagram for kids

Instagram exploits youngsters' fear of missing out as they constantly check their devices seeking approval, says CCFC


Reuters April 16, 2021
PHOTO: REUTERS

An advocacy group on Thursday called on Facebook Chief Executive Officer Mark Zuckerberg to not create a version of the photo-sharing app Instagram for children who are under 13, as it would put them at "great risk".

The letter to Zuckerberg from the Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood (CCFC) comes at a time the world's largest social network has been criticized for amplifying misinformation globally across its platforms, while also exposing children to inappropriate material. 

Victim of data breach shares how Facebook tracks him in viral video

Facebook did not immediately respond to a Reuters request for comment.

Instagram exploits youngsters' fear of missing out as they constantly check their devices seeking approval and uploading pictures, CCFC said, adding that the platform's continuous focus on appearance and self-presentation would be a challenge to adolescents' privacy and wellbeing.

Facebook panel to review requests to remove 'harmful' content

"While collecting valuable family data and cultivating a new generation of Instagram users may be good for Facebook's bottom line, it will likely increase the use of Instagram by young children who are particularly vulnerable to the platform's manipulative and exploitative features," the letter said.

CCFC is a nonprofit organisation that believes that child-targeted marketing, along with the excessive screen time it encourages, will damage kids' healthy development, and is dedicated to ending marketing to children.

Our Publications

COMMENTS

Replying to X

Comments are moderated and generally will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive.

For more information, please see our Comments FAQ