Facebook pausing effort to build Instagram for kids

Adam Mosseri, Facebook

Beck Diefenbach | Reuters

Facebook, which confronted sharp criticism from lawmakers and customers for its plan to develop an Instagram for kids, introduced Monday it is pausing work on the venture.

“While we believe building ‘Instagram Kids’ is the right thing to do, Instagram, and its parent company Facebook, will re-evaluate the project at a later date. In the interim Instagram will continue to focus on teen safety and expanding parental supervision features for teens,” the corporate stated in an announcement.

Instagram head Adam Mosseri stated the app is supposed for youngsters aged 10 to 12.

The pause comes after an explosive Wall Street Journal report confirmed Facebook repeatedly found its Instagram app is dangerous to a lot of youngsters. The Journal cited Facebook research over the previous three years that examined how Instagram impacts its younger consumer base, with teenage ladies being most notably harmed.

One inside Facebook presentation stated that amongst teenagers who reported suicidal ideas, 13% of British customers and 6% of American customers traced the problem to Instagram.

The report led lawmakers to readdress their issues over the social media app. Just after the information broke, representatives on each side of the aisle demanded solutions from Facebook. Rep. Lori Trahan, D-Mass., additionally referred to as on Facebook to abandon its Instagram for kids efforts.

Antigone Davis, Facebook’s international head of security, will testify earlier than the Senate Commerce subcommittee on client safety on Thursday.

Facebook has repeatedly defended its efforts to draw extra kids to the app. Mosseri argued in a weblog put up early Monday that youngsters are already on-line.

“Critics of ‘Instagram Kids’ will see this as an acknowledgment that the project is a bad idea. That’s not the case. The reality is that kids are already online, and we believe that developing age-appropriate experiences designed specifically for them is far better for parents than where we are today,” he stated. Instagram will pause its work to tackle issues with mother and father, consultants, policymakers and regulators.

Instagram may even work on increasing its parental controls to teen accounts.

“These new features, which parents and teens can opt into, will give parents the tools to meaningfully shape their teen’s experience,” Mosseri stated.

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