Common Sense Issues Statement on Meta's New Content Policies for Kids and Teens

Common Sense Media
Tuesday, January 9, 2024

SAN FRANCISCO, January 9, 2024—Today, Meta announced a new set of content policies aimed at young users of Instagram and Facebook, following mounting pressure to protect children and teens from harmful content on its apps. James P. Steyer, founder and CEO of Common Sense Media, issued the following statement in response.

"Today's news from Meta validates the concerns that I, along with millions of parents, the US Surgeon General, multiple whistleblowers, and 42 attorneys general, have expressed: Meta has been deceiving the public about the harm its products have caused on children for the sake of profit, to the tune of $11 billion last year alone. These so-called ‘protections' are nothing but a short-term fix, merely a bandaid, to distract from a huge underlying problem that social media apps like Instagram are not a safe place for children and teens.

A closer look at Meta's policies shows that they are still putting the onus on teens to navigate their own privacy, and are inventing their own standards for how content will be limited. They state that content will be blocked if it ‘breaks their rules' but how can the public possibly trust them to establish adequate rules when they've broken our trust and hurt our kids time and time again? Major new legislation that advocates for changing the design of platform and privacy practices is still needed to hold tech companies accountable - not just for the creation of new settings - but for the efficacy of protections that reduce the harm on millions of children who are served inappropriate content on a daily basis."

About Common Sense
Common Sense is the nation's leading nonprofit organization dedicated to improving the lives of kids and families by providing the trustworthy information, education, and independent voice they need to thrive in the 21st century. Learn more at commonsense.org.