Facebook has confirmed what we are feared, that it is working on ‘Instagram for Kids’, as it steps towards making the platform suitable for younger users.
Instagram’s global head of policy Karina Newton confirmed this in an interview with Australian media, explaining: “A lot of what we’re trying to do across Instagram and Facebook is to create this experience where young people are specifically … We are working on policies and products and data minimisation and privacy across the board, to be able to really give them the best experience.
“In terms of the Instagram youth product, it‘s definitely very, very early days, and it’s something that I’m sure we’ll have more to share on. This is something that we’re interested in developing in consultation with experts in child development, child safety and mental health and privacy advocates, including our youth advisers. And we also look forward to working with legislators and regulators.”
This comes after Campaign for a Commercial-free Childhood wrote an open letter to Mark Zuckerberg, urging him to reconsider, writing: “The current version of Instagram is not safe for children under 13 and something must be done to protect the millions of children who have lied about their age to create Instagram accounts,”
Newton argues with this, saying: “We want to improve the experience. Instagram was not built for people who are under 13 years old, and so should we should we develop that, and move forward with it in close consultation, we really want to ensure that it‘s an experience for youth that is age appropriate with parental control. And those will be key priorities.”