The popular social media site Instagram, owned by Facebook, is pausing the development of their new “Instagram Kids” over growing concerns of the negative impact social media is having on teens.
The bombshell news that Instagram was working on a dedicated social media app for kids was first reported by Buzzfeed back in March of this year. Instagram later confirmed the new service was in development and testing, which was met with outrage from rights organizations nationwide, as well as from multiple bullying and mental health groups, which were all concerned about the impact of giving younger children access to social media (CNet).
Over the course of the past month, reporting by The Wall Street Journal elevated concerns that Facebook’s internal research showed Instagram to be bad for teens, which added to the pressure and negative PR being dumped on the well-known company.
Despite the outcries from many consumers, it is highly unlikely that such a service for kids won’t make an appearance at some point. In a blog post published on Monday, head of Instagram Adam Mosseri said he still believes building Instagram Kids is “the right thing to do.”
As kids are already online and misrepresenting their age to access Instagram (which is only accessible to over-13s), he said that Instagram thought it best for children in the 10-12 age group to have an age-appropriate service dedicated to them. “Instagram Kids will not be designed to replicate the adult version of the app, but to be ad-free and overseen directly by parents,” he added (CNet).
“Our intention is not for this version to be the same as Instagram today,” said Mosseri. “Parents can supervise the time their children spend on the app and oversee who can message them, who can follow them and who they can follow.”
ARTICLE: ETHAN FINN
MANAGING EDITOR: CARSON CHOATE
PHOTO CREDITS: NEWS.KNOWLEDIA.COM
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