The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has announced an unprecedented ban on the usage of social media by those under the age of 13. This urgent public health initiative was put into place in an effort to protect kids from the long-term impacts of cyberbullying, trolling, cyberstalking, and other forms of online violence.
It is no secret that these activities can lead to depression and other mental health issues, as well as being potentially lethal in severe cases. The government’s latest move to raise the age limit on social media use is a bold and controversial one — but one that ultimately has children’s best interests at heart. Parents should take this issue seriously and educate their kids about the real dangers of using social media before the age of thirteen.
The Washington Examiner reports, following Surgeon General Vivek Murthy’s call for government limits beyond the current industry standard of 13 years old, Congress is considering restricting social media access for teenagers.
NBC broke the shocking news from the surgeon general.
A Wall Street Journal report in 2021, titled the “Facebook Files,” shed light on the mental health consequences of online use for young people. The report was based on internal Facebook reports. Whistleblower Frances Haugen testified before Congress as a result of the coverage.
After several failed attempts to pass legislation, two bills were enacted in the post-election lame-duck session in December. In one, federal privacy protections for children would have been expanded, and in the other, safeguards would have been required for their online activities. Both bills received significant support, but neither became “must-pass” legislation.
A study published by Jama pediatrics had this to say.
In Washington policy circles, however, the issue still persists. In a Wall Street Journal opinion piece last month, President Biden called for bipartisan congressional action, saying, “We must hold social-media companies accountable for what they are doing to our children.”
Federal Trade Commission enforces the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act, enacted by Congress in 1998. The law requires parental permission for online products and services that target children under 13. Currently, there are proposals to extend users’ protections through their teenage years.
It’s never been easy to be a kid, but the digital age has added a whole new set of risks. That’s why the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have made the bold decision to ban children under 13 from using social media. The aim of this innovative public health initiative is to protect our kids from the long-term effects of cyberbullying, trolling, cyberstalking, and other harmful forms of online violence. With this new policy, we look forward to a brighter tomorrow in which our children may safely navigate the digital space without fear – it’s an essential step toward guarding their futures and ensuring they are equipped with the resources they need to thrive into adulthood!
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