Instagram, a Facebook-owned photo-sharing app, officially confirmed that work on an “Instagram Kids” version for kids under the age of 13 has been put on hold.
Instagram Kids was supposed to require parental permission to join and provide ad-free, age-appropriate material, but politicians and advocacy groups in the United States have pushed the social media giant to cancel its plans, citing safety concerns.
Josh Golin, executive director of Fairplay, a children’s advocacy group, said, “We won’t stop pressuring Facebook until they permanently pull the plug.”
Instagram has announced that it is “paused” development of “Instagram Kids,” a version of the photo-sharing app aimed at children under the age of 13.
In a blog post today, Instagram CEO Adam Mosseri revealed the decision, stating that the Facebook-owned firm would continue to work on parental-supervised experiences for younger users.
“The reality is that kids are already online, and we feel that creating age-appropriate experiences tailored to them is a lot better option for parents than where we are now,” it said.
Mosseri accuses the media and critics of misinterpreting the app’s aim in a blog post and a series of tweets. He explains, “It was never meant for younger kids, but tweens (ages 10-12).” He also says that knowledge of the plan “leaked way before we knew what it would be” in a subsequent tweet. People were afraid of the worst, and we didn’t have so many solutions at the time. It’s obvious that we need to spend more effort on this.”
We’re pausing “Instagram Kids”, although we believe building it is the right thing to do. More here: https://t.co/bwCyUn97So
— Adam Mosseri (@mosseri) September 27, 2021
The Wall Street Journal published an article earlier this month that emphasized statistics suggesting that Instagram was having a devastating effect on teenagers, particularly young girls, and that Facebook had made only modest steps to solve the problem. Facebook, on the other hand, has stated that the report is false.
The аpp’s development has already been slammed by many organizations. “[T]he industry’s real goal is to grow its lucrative аnd highly profitable Instagram frаnchise to аn even younger demogrаphic, introducing children to а powerful commerciаlized sociаl mediа environment thаt presents major threаts to their privаcy, heаlth, аnd wellbeing,” Kаthryn Montgomery, ”
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