Committee to vote on bill that would allow parents to sue social media giants

Lawmakers will discuss a bill on Tuesday that would hold big tech companies accountable if children become addicted to technology and experience side effects such as depression or even suicide. life due to my addiction to social media coupled with my mental illness and my struggle with depression,” said Larissa May. She is the founder of #HalfTheStory, a non-profit organization that aims to improve the next generation’s relationship with social media. May will testify before the Assembly Judiciary Committee at the state Capitol on Tuesday in support of Assembly Bill 2408. The committee will meet at 9 a.m. to discuss the bill drafted by Assms. Jordan Cunningham, R-San Luis Obispo and Buffy Wicks, D-Oakland. The bill would establish that companies operating major social media platforms, such as TikTok and Instagram, would have a duty not to get children addicted to their apps. Violating this duty could then expose them to legal proceedings. The bill would only apply to companies earning at least $100 million in revenue per year. It could include civil penalties of $25,000 per violation, or up to $250,000 per violation if done knowingly and willfully. TechNet, an association representing the tech industry, including social media platforms, opposes the bill. Dylan Hoffman will testify at the hearing on behalf of TechNet. “The way this bill defines addiction so broadly means that if you use this site and enjoy using it, you could be considered to have been addicted,” Hoffman said. He said technology companies take many steps to protect children who use their services, giving parents ways to control what content their children can access. Hoffman agrees that protecting children online is an important issue, but he said there are better ways to do this than a bill that he says punishes companies simply for having a platform to which children can access. “No social media platform, from the biggest to the smallest, can bear that kind of liability and I think because it’s such a high standard they would inevitably limit social media,” Hoffman said. . “So you imagine if you’re under 18, you can’t access those sites anymore.” After both sides testify in Tuesday’s public hearing, the committee is expected to vote on whether to move the bill forward. .You can read an analysis of the bill here.

Lawmakers will discuss a bill on Tuesday that would hold big tech companies accountable if children become addicted to technology and experience side effects such as depression or even suicide.

“My journey with digital wellbeing began 7 years ago when I nearly lost my life due to my social media addiction coupled with my mental illness and my struggle with depression,” said Larissa May .

She is the founder of #HalfTheStory, a non-profit organization that aims to improve the next generation’s relationship with social media.

May will testify before the Assembly Judiciary Committee at the state Capitol on Tuesday in support of Assembly Bill 2408.

The committee will meet at 9 a.m. to discuss the bill drafted by Assms. Jordan Cunningham, R-San Luis Obispo and Buffy Wicks, D-Oakland.

The bill would establish that companies operating major social media platforms, such as TikTok and Instagram, would have a duty not to get children addicted to their apps. Violating this duty could then expose them to legal proceedings.

The bill would only apply to companies earning at least $100 million in revenue per year.

This could include civil penalties of $25,000 per violation, or up to $250,000 per violation if done knowingly and willfully.

TechNet, an association representing the tech industry, including social media platforms, opposes the bill. Dylan Hoffman will testify at the hearing on behalf of TechNet.

“The way this bill defines addiction so broadly means that if you use this site and enjoy using it, you could be considered to have been addicted,” Hoffman said.

He said tech companies take many steps to protect children who use their services, giving parents ways to control what content their children can access.

Hoffman agrees that protecting children online is an important issue, but he said there are better ways to do this than a bill that he says punishes companies simply for having a platform to which children can access.

“No social media platform, from the biggest to the smallest, can bear that kind of liability and I think because it’s such a high standard they would inevitably limit social media,” Hoffman said. . “So you imagine if you’re under 18, you can’t access those sites anymore.”

After both sides testify in Tuesday’s public hearing, the committee is expected to vote on whether to move the bill forward.

You can read an analysis of the bill here.