Editor’s Note: For more on the impact of technology and social media on society and our kids, check out season 6 of the podcast “Chasing Life with Dr. Sanjay Gupta.”
A growing number of states are turning the screws on Big Tech, the internet and social media. On Wednesday, Montana became the first state to completely ban TikTok, although many are skeptical that the controversial new legislation will be enforceable.
Other moves include laws that aim to tighten regulations on social media platforms in general, like those recently enacted by Arkansas and Utah.
There are three worthwhile goals that appear to be at least part of the motivation behind legal maneuvers like these: preventing companies from collecting data on us and our children, protecting kids online and balancing your rights with your responsibilities when you post content to online platforms. For example, if a platform hosts content that leads to someone being harmed, can it then also held responsible? So far, the answer has been no, according to a recent US Supreme Court decision.
For me, though, the discussions around smartphones and social media are very personal. As a dad of three teenage girls, I am often left wondering about the impact of so much screen time on their brains.