“Instagram for Kids” Project Temporarily Paused

Silas Fletcher Avatar
Silas Fletcher
30 Sep 2021
“Instagram for Kids” Project Temporarily Paused image

Instagram is not for kids, so far. Though the most influential picture-based social media has been developing its kids-friendly version, the plans have changed. Now Adam Mosseri, the Instagram chief, steps out to explain the reasons why it’s delayed (the most convincing of them being the need to consider the psychological effect).

As the explanation goes, Instagram for Kids was not indeed for kids, but rather for tweens, between 10 and 13. It was considered that giving them limited access legally is better than pushing them to find other ways around. Among all, this version had to include parental consent and control, so parents can supervise what their kids do on Instagram.

The very need in “Instagram for Kids” emerged when the managers realized that tweens still access the service, despite terms of use directly prohibiting using Instagram for those under 13. Inventive youngsters use their relatives’ accounts, fake their age, do whatever they want, which exposes them to both hidden and explicit dangers of Instagram.

And it’s not only about disapproved relationships between adults and minors that can emerge in DM (though this is among the primary concerns). The very aesthetic of Instagram, with its cult of beauty, success, and appearance, is itself a psychological threat, as experts say. Frankly speaking, too many adults are also vulnerable to this, so the danger is quite real.

Which cannot be said so far about the project itself, becoming more imaginary. Facebook, after the scandalous leak named “Facebook Files”, just insists on its concerns and shows an unwillingness to start a new service until experts confirm it will work as planned. You can never predict how it goes with children, but maybe Facebook has some teenage AI up its sleeve to think like a youngster.

Leave a comment