If they’ve done anything, they’ve managed to stay in the headlines in 2021.
And that’s not always a bad thing, but, if you’re Facebook’s darling Instagram division, you don’t really want to be known as part of a social media industry characterized as being as “dangerous as a car accident,” a place for potential human trafficking, or as a safe haven for bullies.
To their credit, Instagram has addressed every controversy head-on and, in many cases, fixed the problem where they can – even those that they seem to create themselves (such as when the app’s boss suggested it was moving away from photography and to other media).
Well, today’s story actually is a throwback to March of this year when the company, as part of its 2021 tradition to stay in the headlines, was apparently considering the launch of an “Instagram for Kids” app.
As you can imagine, with the recent Wall Street Journal report detailing Instagram’s internal knowledge of certain problems that the app had, the app for kids concept is being put on ice – at least for the meantime.
In a blog post detailing their pullback from this concept, Instagram’s Adam Mosseri writes:
“We wanted to provide an update on our work to build an Instagram experience for people under the age of 13, often referred to as “Instagram Kids.” We started this project to address an important problem seen across our industry: kids are getting phones younger and younger, misrepresenting their age, and downloading apps that are meant for those 13 or older.
We firmly believe that it’s better for parents to have the option to give their children access to a version of Instagram that is designed for them — where parents can supervise and control their experience — than relying on an app’s ability to verify the age of kids who are too young to have an ID.
While we stand by the need to develop this experience, we’ve decided to pause this project. This will give us time to work with parents, experts, policymakers and regulators, to listen to their concerns, and to demonstrate the value and importance of this project for younger teens online today.”
So, better options for parents that want to regulate their child’s behavior online and temporary cancellation of the app specifically targeted towards them.
That’s a temporary win for people against the app and critics of social media in general but we’ll see how long it holds.
As usual, we will be sure to update you on the latest from Instagram and other photography-focused apps in future posts.
What do you think of the whole Instagram for Kids concept? Let us know your thoughts on Instagram’s proposed app targeted at kids in the comments below.
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