Utah Enacts Laws Mandating Parental Consent For Teens To Access Social Media

Utah has passed two new laws that will place restrictions on how social media apps can be used by teenagers in the state. Under these laws, social media companies like Meta, Snap, and TikTok will need to obtain parental permission before teenagers can create accounts on their platforms. The laws also mandate curfews, parental controls, and age verification features for such companies.

These new laws could significantly impact how social media platforms handle the accounts of their youngest users, as they require parental consent, age verification, and ban companies from using features that could cause addiction among minors. However, it is still unclear how the state intends to enforce these laws and whether they will apply to teenagers’ existing social media accounts. The laws are set to take effect next March.

The potential effects of social media on teenagers, especially younger ones, have been a matter of concern for a while. In fact, earlier this year, the Surgeon General stated that “13 is too early,” referring to the minimum age when most social media platforms allow teenagers to join. While lawmakers in Congress and other states have proposed similar restrictions on social media use for teens, not everyone agrees that such laws are necessary. Some organizations, such as the Electronic Frontier Foundation, have opposed the Utah law, arguing that it could violate young people’s First Amendment rights, among other concerns raised by various groups.

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