Facebook has recently announced that it will stop advertisers from targeting people under the age of 18 on all its platforms. The advertisers till now, were able to collect data regarding people’s interests and their activity on other sites.
After this, advertisers will be able to people under the age of 18 only by their age, gender, or location on Facebook, Messenger, and Instagram. This change was brought in after the company has decided to listen to youth advocates that the people under 18 might find it difficult to make decisions about targeting.
Also, Instagram users under the age of 16 will now be getting private accounts by default on the platform. This is to avoid unwanted contacts according to the company. The account can be made public if they wish to do so. Recently Facebook was criticized heavily after its plans for an Instagram for children under 13 were leaked. Many state attorneys in the US came against this idea by writing to Mark Zuckerberg telling him to drop the idea. Since then, Facebook has been trying to introduce children-friendly changes in its platforms.
The company confirmed that they are working on an “Instagram experience for tweens”. They claim that it will provide a safer platform for children as parents are given greater transparency and control over it. Messenger and YouTube already have their kids’ versions. Some of the critics however accuse Facebook of hooking kids on to the online platforms.
Facebook is working on stricter age verification systems and technology to disallow people with records of misbehaviour to see young people’s posts and accounts.