Everyone except Facebook thinks "Instagram for kids" is a bad idea

Originally published at: Everyone except Facebook thinks "Instagram for kids" is a bad idea | Boing Boing


That image is probably the most subtly horrifying thing I’ve seen @beschizza create. Well done.


What in the hell are kids under the age of 13 even supposed to post on Instagram? And who the hell wants to look at what kids that age are posting, aside from sickos? I don’t know if young children should have social media or not, but Instagram seems like an odd choice either way.


But there’s money to be made.


That’s a no for me, dog.


“As every parent knows, kids are already on street. corners. We just want to sell them crack.”


I was looking for another reason to hate Zuck, f@ck that guy to hell.


Tell you what, Facebook execs: put your own kids on this platform for a year, have independent researchers monitor the effects, and then release it to the general public. After all, social media is harmless to kids, right? Right?


Sadly my friend they’d readily agree, anything for a buck, even at the cost of their children.


The old official anonymous spokesperson trick.


what could possibly go wrong?


I didn’t even think about that. As horrifying as that is, it’s not even at the top of my list of things to care about if this ever becomes a thing. I’m more concerned about the Bookface not only creating a soft porn service for pedophiles, but legitimizing it and normalizing it. You’ve gotta wonder what it is Bookface is really after.


Like cigarette companies, facebook is just trying to get kids hooked on social media before they can have their own accounts - they fill the same role that candy cigarettes did for real cigarettes. Kids turn 14 (or 16, or whatever) and they have their own curated account and friends network waiting for them. I think that’s actually the bigger risk - facebook are just trying to groom a faithful user-base.

Let’s leave aside the parents who monetize their children through social media already.


Ha! As if adults are?

I’ve had this debate bouncing around in my head for years and despite any studies stating it doesn’t do explicit harm, I have never felt ok with it. The reason is because the conversation is flipped. The question always asked is “what harm could it do?” (although the past 5+ have shown us exactly how harmful it can be), when the question should be “what good does it do?”.

Adults struggle constantly with the negative impacts of social media and they’ve only had a tiny sliver of their life repackaged and sold back to them. Most adults have at least a vague memory of what a private, offline life was like. Putting children into that pipeline ensures that all aspects of the person-as-commodity, surveillance capitalism and social valuation-by-internet will be a monkey on their backs from the moment of their birth. They will never even have the choice that every adult has enjoyed. Utterly grotesque.


I believe I read an article that social media use in young adults has lead to an increase in youth suicide, especially in pre-teen girls. It didn’t seem to have an effect on older kids.

The theory is that there is a period in time with mental development where one doesn’t have the mental defenses to shrug off negative comments, and social media can be rife with it.


Yeah what’s up with that? Aren’t spokespeople supposed to represent their company?


You can’t invite unprecedented levels of bullying into people’s lives 24/7 and then call them weak when they’re unable to handle it. Especially when you’re also ratcheting up the pressure to be on social media.


CNN could simply have written “Facebook said in a statement”. If Facebook complained, they could turn around and say, “We presume that anything said by an official spokesperson represents the company’s position. If it doesn’t, that’s your problem not ours.”


To be clear, I am not calling anyone weak. Handling negativity is hard for everyone, but younger people especially because they haven’t matured enough be able to handle it. It is just like kids who haven’t matured enough to carry a bag of dog food or something. There are physical and mental limitations - because they are kids.

I don’t think kids need to be on social media. We kept my kiddo off of it and she still is largely off of it. She has texting with friends and Discord with theater groups. While not completely free of drama, these are small “walled gardens” with some moderation. She doesn’t have FB or any other thing where she has people interjecting themselves. And I think that is a good thing.


One day someone will need to be able to carry a big bag of dog food. Hopefully nobody will need to be on Instagram though.