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Instagram has unveiled new capabilities that it claims will help parents and teenagers manage their time on the platform. Parents will be able to see how much time their children spend on Instagram and set time limitations for them, while teenagers will receive reminders to take a break.
It comes just a day before Instagram CEO Adam Mosseri is set to testify before a panel of US Senators looking into online safety. In recent months, Instagram has been under growing scrutiny due to teen use of the platform. Its internal research, which claimed that Instagram was to blame for rising anxiety among teenagers, was the first in a string of exposes in France. Documents from inside Facebook that were leaked by Haugen.
It’s OK to take a break. ❤️— Instagram (@instagram) December 7, 2021
We want your time on Instagram to be positive and intentional. Starting today, you can now add reminders to take a break while you’re scrolling on Instagram.
Learn More: https://t.co/fDrLl1boqw pic.twitter.com/loAeZQzPPa
Take a break:
Mr. Mosseri revealed the arrival of the “take-a-break” function in his blog post, which he had previously mentioned on Twitter in November. He stated it will be released on Tuesday in the United Kingdom, Ireland, the United States, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand “If someone has been browsing for a specific period of time,” Mr. Mosseri wrote, “we’ll advise them to take a break from Instagram and propose they set reminders to take more breaks in the future.” He added that the feature would also display them professional advice to “help them reflect and reset.”
According to him, teen users would receive notifications to enable break reminders. Instagram also said that in March 2022, it would release a new tool for parents that will allow them to track how much time their children spend on Instagram and set time limits for the app. Teens will also be able to opt-in to a system that will notify their parents if they make a report against an Instagram user.
Instagram already has time limitations; users can voluntarily set a daily time limit and receive a message when that limit is reached.
Mr. Mosseri didn’t say what kinds of content the “nudge” would apply to, how it will function, or when it will be applied. In an illustration on the blog article, the sole example supplied was that a visitor who had looked at beauty topics would be interested in travel, interior design, or dogs.
“I continue to welcome productive collaboration with lawmakers and policymakers on our shared goal of creating an online world that both benefits and protects many generations to come,” Mr Mosseri concluded his blog post announcing these new measures, ahead of his grilling by US politicians on Wednesday.
The Molly Rose Foundation, which was established in memory of Molly Russell, a teen who committed suicide in 2017 after viewing traumatic material on Instagram, praised the new safeguards.
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