New York State wants to legislate on the use of social networks by minors

New York State wants to legislate on the use of

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    New York State is set to pass a law giving parents more control over their teens’ social media feeds. This bill aims to protect minors and make them less addicted to social networks, the intensive use of which would contribute to deteriorating the mental health of young people.

    According to the Wall Street Journalthe State of New York is preparing to vote on a bill prohibiting social networks from using algorithms and automatic feeds for accounts held by minors without parental consent.

    The bill, called the Stop Addictive Feeds Exploitation (SAFE) for Kids Act, was initiated by state Governor Kathy Hochul. . It requires parental consent for children to have access to algorithmic feeds on social networks. The project does not concern content strictly speaking but requires that these automated feeds are only accessible with the authorization of parents (or guardians) in order to prevent minors from coming across potentially violent or sexually explicit content. The bill is also expected to prohibit sending nightly notifications without parental consent.

    This law is intended to combat social media addiction, the isolation of children and adolescents on screens and their ability to install and use social networks without their parents’ knowledge. The trend is also spreading to many states.

    In 2023, Florida was the first state to adopt a law prohibiting minors under the age of 14 from creating accounts on social networks without parental consent. That same year, Utah passed an even stronger law, requiring not only parental consent for minors’ use of social media apps, but also that parents be able to have access to the account and all messages. , including private ones, of their children and that access is prohibited to minors between 10:30 p.m. and 6:30 a.m. At the start of 2024, Utah, however, relaxed the obligation given to parents to validate the registration of their children. In California, a proposed law aims to limit the screen time of adolescents on social networks.

    These initiatives respond to growing concerns about the impact of social media on adolescent mental health and well-being. Additionally, banning nighttime notifications aims to encourage better sleep habits and reduce nighttime interruptions caused by incessant social media alerts.