If Californian lawmakers get their way, parents would be able to sue social media firm if their kids get addicted to social media platforms.
The bill aims to protect ‘child users’, defined as children under the age of 18 who use a social media platform, from becoming addicted to social media.
The bill defines social media addiction as a preoccupation, obsession with, or difficulty to reduce the use of a social media platform that causes or contributes to mental, emotional, development, or physical harm for the user.
Although the bill has passed the local Assembly already, it still has to pass a few more steps before it will officially become law in the state of California. Following the Assembly, the state Senate is the next step where it will undergo two weeks of hearings and negotiations.
While many parents are for the Bill, business groups have warned that instead of paying fines or facing the legal risk that goes along with the Bill, social media companies would probably choose to rather not allow children to create profiles on their platforms in the state of California.
The LA Times reports that the Bill gives social media companies two paths to escape liability in the courts. If the bill becomes law, it would take effect on the 1st of January. Companies that remove features deemed addictive to children by the 1st of April would not be responsible for damages.
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