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Online Safety Bills – Differing Views

Posted on 07-Jul-2023 by Xavier Caddle

In an article posted on the news site The Hill on March 5th, 2023, Ben Sperry shared views on three bills related to youth online protections. The bills are:

·         Kids Online Safety Act (2023, reintroduced)

·         Children and Teens’ Online Privacy Protection Act (2023, reintroduced)

·         Protecting Kids on Social Media Act (2023, new)

Writing about these views, Ben states that social-media platforms should share in the accountability for issues faced by youth through the use of their technologies, the bills could negatively impact the revenue streams of the platforms. One way this could happen is the increased costs platforms would face in order to enact the changes necessary to be on the right side of the law if changed. For instance, the Protecting Kids on Social Media Act would restrict kids under 13 from using social-media platforms, and require parental consent for kids ages 13 to 17. This loss of revenue could possibly make producing products or content for youth an unattractive business venture when profits from youth segments are small in comparison to other groups.

Chief advocacy officer at Common Sense MediaDanny Weiss, also shares some concerns with some of the sections of the new bill. On March 2nd, 2023, Rebecca Klar pointed out in an article that Weiss thinks more needs to be done about the way social-media platforms collect, store, and sell data. One of the issues Weiss points to is that merely requiring parental consent without tackling these challenges does not improve upon the issues we face today.


What are your thoughts on the bills being introduced? Comment below!

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