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Instagram pauses “Instagram Kids” in attempt to gain parent support

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The Facebook powered service is creating a kid-friendly platform for young Instagram users, but it doesn’t come without controversy.

Instagram pauses new kid-friendly platform project

Social media platform Instagram, powered by Facebook, has pushed pause on their controversial “Instagram Kids” network.

The tech giant is in the process of creating a spin-off of their iconic photo sharing app in what is planned to be a purpose-built networking tool for children.

However, those plans have drawn to a halt as Instagram works to reinforce the app’s parental supervision and safety features.

Instagram’s solution to a bigger problem

Instagram coined the idea in an attempt to address the ongoing issue of children making false claims about their age.

“We started this project to address an important problem seen across our industry,” Instagram says.

“Kids are getting phones younger and younger, misrepresenting their age, and downloading apps that are meant for those 13 or older.”

The original app’s terms and condition’s state that it is intended for users aged thirteen plus, however young users tend to overlook this and proceed to creating an account.

“Instagram Kids” thus provides children with their own platform to explore the world of social media, with Instagram assuring that it’s the parent’s decision on whether their child should have access to the app.

“We firmly believe that it’s better for parents to have the option to give their children access to a version of Instagram that is designed for them … than relying on an app’s ability to verify the age of kids who are too young to have an ID.”

It’s because of the introduction to develop such opt-in parental settings tools, that Instagram has had to press pause on the project.

The tech giant adds that the demands of parents, experts and policy makers will be considered in the app’s development.

In an address to critics

While Instagram is considering all angles of concern, critics continue to argue that the app’s development is a bad idea due to mental health and safety fears.

However, Instagram argues that it was never their intention to create their kid-friendly version the exact same as their current platform.

“The reality is that kids are already online, and we believe that developing age-appropriate experiences designed specifically for them is far better for parents than where we are today,” Instagram says.

“It will require parental permission to join, it won’t have ads, and it will have age-appropriate content and features.”

“Parents can supervise the time their children spend on the app and oversee who can message them, who can follow them and who they can follow. The list goes on.”

Written by Rebecca Borg

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