Social media creates an unsafe environment for its users

Instagram privacy settings do not always create safe media conditions
Instagram privacy settings do not always create safe media conditions
Ava Highland

In a time surrounded by technology, it yields many pros yet still has great detrimental effects. People of all ages are often found scrolling through social media platforms on a routinely basis. However, this strong investment in social media has shaken the lives of many.

Mark Zuckerberg, the CEO of Meta, recently testified in front of Congress for the 8th time.

Zuckerberg was questioned for nearly 4 hours, along with CEOs from Discord, Snapchat, X, and TikTok, on what was being done to protect children from harm via social media.

BBC noted that, “Legislation is currently going through Congress which aims to hold social media companies to account for material posted on their platforms.”

The 5 social media CEOs stood in front of several families whose children had been harmed by social media. Zuckerberg was under the most fire and asked by Senator Josh Hawley if he wished to apologize to the families who were present.
“I’m sorry for everything you’ve all gone through, it’s terrible,” Zuckerberg said, “No one should have to go through the things that your families have suffered.”

As the use of social media has seen an increase in use over the past years, the harmful effects have followed as well.
Zuckerberg opened in the congressional hearing saying that, “The existing body of scientific work has not shown a causal link between using social media and young people having worse mental health.”

However, the claim was quickly refuted. ScienceNews noted that, “In recent years, studies have started to show a causal link between teen social media use and reduced well-being or mood disorders, chiefly depression and anxiety.”

The members of Congress questioning the social media CEOs discussed a need for improvements to keep children safe when using these platforms. In 2023, Meta spent $5 billion on safety and security, CBS News explained. However, there is still a long way to go for the safety of people on social media.

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