PTC Commends Utah for Efforts to Protect Children from Social Media Harms

Written by PTC | Published March 29, 2023

LOS ANGELES (March 29, 2023) – The Parents Television and Media Council (PTC) commended Utah for its new law that will require children under age 18 to have parental consent to access social media platforms. The new law, to go into effect on March 1, 2024, will also require social media platforms to block access for child accounts between 10:30 pm to 6:30 am.

“Utah has taken a bold and courageous step to tackle children’s access to social media to address the myriad of problems and harms that social media can have on youth. We applaud the state’s efforts to help parents, and ultimately, to help children,” said Melissa Henson, vice president of the Parents Television and Media Council.

“Our children are the target of Big Tech, yet they are the most vulnerable. Children are up against social media algorithms that can feed harmful content to children on repeat and against corporate interests that market explicit content to children without repercussions. There is no question that the mental health crisis among youth is caused in part by the rise of social media access.

“California led the way by signing into law the Age-Appropriate Design Code Act that compels tech platforms to design products with children in mind. We know that other states like Arkansas and Texas are considering similar bills to Utah. Our country’s leaders need to understand the urgency of protecting children from online harms and we hope to see more action at both the state and federal levels this year,” Henson said.

In 2022, the PTC revealed that Hollywood is marketing teen-targeted TV shows with explicit adult content to young teens through social media sites popular with 13-17-year-olds, thereby doing an end-run around parents.

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