Instagram has suspended development of a children’s sub-app called “Instagram Kids” aimed at children under the age of 13 until it resolves concerns about freedom of access and content.
Adam Mosseri, chief executive of the famous firm, said on Monday in a blog that the delay would give the company time “to work with parents, experts, lawmakers and regulators, listen to their concerns and demonstrate the value and importance of this project for younger teens (who are browsing) in Internet today. “
The Instagram Kids app has been promoted in that requires parental consent to participate, will be ad-free and include age-appropriate content. But US lawmakers and rights groups are urging the god giant social media to cancel plans to launch the app, citing security concerns.
“We will not stop lobbying Facebook until this order is completely removed,” said Josh Jolin, executive director of children’s group Fairplay.
mental health problems
The announcement follows a series of negative articles in the Wall Street Journal that Facebook was aware that some teenage girls’ use of Instagram had caused anxiety and mental health problems.
However, the development of the Instagram Kids app for younger audiences was met with almost immediate and widespread backlash.
Last March, Facebook announced the development of a version of the Instagram application for children and said it was “exploring a parent-controlled experience”.
Message for the safety of children
The negative reaction came almost immediately: last May a group of forty-four representatives of the attorney general of the Republican and Democratic parties of the United States wrote a letter to Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of “Facebook”, urging him to withdraw from the project, for the child safety.
In their letter, the group also noted the rise in cyberbullying, the potential vulnerability of predators online and what they called the “record unstable “of Facebook to protect children on the app platforms.
Facebook faced similar criticism in 2017 when it launched the Messenger Kids app, which was promoted as a way for children to chat with family and friends that parents agree to accept their friend requests.
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