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Senators Drill TikTok, YouTube, Snapchat: Are They Safe for Minors?

Photo by Harold Mendoza via Unsplash

Senators Drill TikTok, YouTube, Snapchat: Are They Safe for Minors?

By Movieguide® Staff

While big tech and social media giants insist that their platforms are safe for children, lawmakers are taking a closer look.

TikTok, YouTube and Snapchat feared comparisons to Facebook—which came under fire after whistleblower Francine Haugen leaked internal documents—and defended their online platforms before the Senate subcommittee at Capitol Hill.

To protect children, Senators applied legal pressure to top media sites where the internet’s biggest online community of young users congregate.

“You cannot trust these kids with big tech,” Senator Richard Blumenthal said in his opening statement.

According to CBN, Snapchat Vice President of Global Public Policy Jennifer Stout, TikTok Americas Vice President and Head of Public Policy Michael Beckerman, and Google Vice President for Government Affairs and Public Policy Leslie Miller, all attended as witnesses before the subcommittee.

Senators drilled the companies, specifically focussing on the safety for children under the age of 13.

CBN reported: “Senators demanded specifics on areas such as data collection, algorithms putting ads and sexual content in front of kids, plus content ranging from glorifying eating disorders to self-harm to violence.”

CEO of Enough is Enough Donna Rice Hughes noted that even media discerning children are at risk of being manipulated by algorithms or shown unsolicited, explicit material.

“First of all, where kids play, predators prey,” Hughes said. “Understand that even your good, smart and careful kids are not safe on these platforms. Some of these companies have taken some steps, but it’s not enough.”

According to CBN, Senate lawmakers made fake accounts to see what teens and minors are presented on the various social media platforms. The Senate reported that their fake accounts were presented with pornographic games and other highly-sexualized content.

“We have had almost three decades of big tech not having any kind of accountability or regulation,” Hughes said.

Now, with more media access than ever, parents must teach their children how to properly discern the content they consume.

Read Also: Snapchat Lacks Accountability, Leads the Charge in Indoctrinating Children

Read Also: New Report Discovers TikTok Exposes Minors to Explicit Content and Drug Usage


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