Facebook has announced their plans to introduce new features for their social media platforms that would work towards discouraging teenagers from consuming harmful content. The announcement comes just as Facebook is facing a problem with a whistleblower who testified against the company’s problematic practices.
Facebook has been facing increasing pressure from the public over the various mental health issues caused by the platform in teenagers. In a report that leaked last week, Facebook is apparently aware about the negative effects on a teenagers mental when using Instagram.
Last week, whistleblower Frances Haugen testified in a committee of lawmakers and regulators, revealing the company’s practices that encourages teens to keep scrolling and thereby affecting their well-being.
In a statement to CNN, Nick Clegg, Facebook’s vice president of global affairs said:
We’re going to introduce something which I think will make a considerable difference, which is where our systems see that the teenager is looking at the same content over and over again and it’s content which may not be conducive to their well-being, we will nudge them to look at other content.
We’re introducing something called, ‘take a break,’ where we will be prompting teens to just simply just take a break from using Instagram,
In addition, Nick Clegg also expressed Facebook’s openness to regulators taking a look at their algorithms to ensure there is no malicious or problematic intent. While these moves are a step in the right direction, it remains to be seen whether it will be enough to prevent the rise in mental health problems in teenagers.