The US state of Utah passed legislation on Thursday March 23 requiring social networks like TikTok or Instagram to obtain parental consent before granting minors access to their platforms.
The text, which will come into force in March 2024, was designed in response to fears about the growing addiction of young people to social networks, cyberbullying and the collection of data on children.
“We now refuse to let social media platforms continue to harm the mental health of our young people
,” tweeted the governor of this western American state, Spencer Cox, who enacted the two laws on Thursday.
The texts also want to force social networks to give parents access to their children's accounts and to establish a default "curfew" preventing minors from accessing them at night.
And they plan to punish platforms targeting users under 18 with
with fines .
Read alsoThe “digital majority”, the first step to protect the youngest from social networks
President Joe Biden had, during his State of the Union address in February, called on the US Congress to legislate on the issue.
California had already introduced laws setting very strict default privacy settings for minors, and other states such as Ohio and Connecticut have laws similar to Utah's.
But tech and civil rights groups said it could restrict marginalized teens' access to online resources, and jeopardize free speech.