Over 70 Lawsuits Have Reportedly Been Filed Against Social Media Companies By Concerned Parents Who Claim Apps Are Leading Their Kids To Commit Suicide

A Bloomberg report claims that over 70 lawsuits have been filed against social media firms such as Snapchat, TikTok, and Meta, claiming that their algorithms are designed to “hook” their children onto their platform, and it’s causing real-World harm to them. The publication notes how a nine-year-old boy had binge-watched youtube videos for several days of the week before he’d spend the rest of his evening scrolling on TikTok and Snapchat, where he ended up sharing a nude photo with a stranger that circulated the photo to others.

Of the dozens of lawsuits, one parent claimed their 16-year-old daughter from Utah became so conscious of her looks that she developed bulimia because she wanted to look like the women she follows on Instagram, while an 11-year-old girl from Connecticut committed suicide after developing severe sleep deprivation from her addiction to instagram and Snapchat.

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At least seven of the legal disputes derive from distraught parents whose children died by suicide due to these apps, including Google, ByteDance, and Facebook, which the plaintiffs say are not being regulated properly and continue to wreck harm to minors. In a court filing to contend the death of the Connecticut child, however, Snapchat said, “All sorts of services may be ‘addictive’ in the habit-forming sense—from television to video games to shopping for clothes—but the law does not impose liability simply for creating an activity which some may do too much, even where, as here, it allegedly results in tragedy.”

The lawsuits are mainly focused on bringing a change to how the algorithms accumulate content for the intended consumer under Section 230. And while Jen King, who is a research fellow at Stanford’s Institute for Human-Centered Artificial Intelligence, believes there have been very few studies performed to fully understand the effects of social media addiction, the legalities surrounding this case could potentially see a judge rule in the plaintiff’s favor.

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Janet Majewski, the mother of 14-year-old Emily, who also committed suicide, says that parents are not always seeing what their children come across on social media. She added that the goal of these firms “is to get as much time from these kids on their product, but there’s no safeguards. They need to change what they’re feeding these children—change the algorithm so it doesn’t take them into these dark places.”

#Socialites, do you see a change being made to how young people are using social media in the near future or will this repetitive cycle of addictions and death continue at this rapid rate?


Originally published at hollywoodunlocked.com

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