Lummis expresses concerns about the addictive nature of social media for children
WASHINGTON D.C. – During a congressional hearing today, U.S. Senator Cynthia Lummis (R-WY) questioned representatives of Snapchat, TikTok and YouTube about the impact their platforms have on children. In a hearing of the Senate Commerce Subcommittee on Consumer Protection, Product Safety, and Data Security, Senator Lummis discussed the need to protect Wyoming children, their mental health and their privacy.
“I am committed to protecting the privacy rights of people in Wyoming and around the country, and I am concerned about the ability of ‘Big Tech’ companies to both respect those rights and also to protect children from the harmful effects of their platforms,” Senator Lummis said. “These companies surveil the online activity of people in Wyoming and the United States, and collect personal information in order to build dossiers that can later be monetized, entirely without their consent. Additionally, social media platforms are designed to keep users engaged as long as possible, which can cause harm, especially to children, through things like poor body image and mental health, and addiction to using these platforms.”
“More must be done to promote responsible social-media use,” Senator Lummis added. “We must educate parents on how to teach their children to avoid the pitfalls of using these platforms. And, more importantly, we must hold these platforms accountable for the effects that their design decisions have on our children.”
To watch Senator Lummis’s Q/A, click here.
Senator Lummis is a cosponsor of the Children and Teens’ Online Privacy Protection Act which strengthens protections for children online against companies that would otherwise harvest their data in order to do things like sell advertising.
Senator Lummis also authored an op-ed last month in The Hill highlighting numerous examples of privacy invasiveness by big tech companies.