Instagram has just announced that it will suspend the development of Instagram Kids, a version of its application aimed at children under 13 years of age.
This announcement was made by Instagram boss Adam Mosseri in a Blog of the social network, adding that the company, which belongs to Facebook, will continue to work on experiences supervised by the parents of the youngest users.
In the publication and in a series of tweets, Mosseri explains, basically, that the blame for this decision is due to a misinterpretation of the purposes of the application by critics and the media.
We’re pausing “Instagram Kids”, although we believe building it is the right thing to do. More here: https://t.co/bwCyUn97So
& mdash; Adam Mosseri 😷 (@mosseri) September 27, 2021
“It was never conceived for young children, but for pre-teens (ages 10 to 12),” he says. While in another tweet, he explains that the news of the project “leaked long before we knew what it was going to be. People feared the worst and we had few answers at the time. It is clear that we have to take more time on this. “
A few weeks ago, a publication in The Wall Street Journal had access to an internal Facebook investigation, which warned about the damage that Instagram caused to the mental health of adolescents, especially regarding the perception that they had of their body image .
On the blog, Mosseri explained that the report published by the outlet “raised a lot of questions for people,” and claims that those criticisms have helped Instagram introduce a number of anti-bullying features.
When this Instagram project for children was announced, Facebook was widely criticized from different groups.
The company responded to the comments stating that the young people were already active on the Internet and that it was best if their experience was supervised. The company also anticipated that it would not display advertising in this new application.
“Facebook claims that creating an Instagram for kids will help keep them safe on the platform,” Kathryn Montgomery of the Center for Digital Democracy told BBC News in April.
“The company’s true goal is to expand its lucrative and highly profitable Instagram franchise to an even younger demographic, introducing children to a powerful commercialized social media environment that poses serious threats to their privacy, health and well-being.”