Youtube, Tiktok, Facebook are destroying American youth, more and more people are joining the movement to delete social media accounts

Youtube, Tiktok, Facebook are destroying American youth, more and more people are joining the movement to delete social media accounts


2023-03-27 19:56:47

According to the Financial Times (FT), the last moments of 16-year-old Ian Ezquerra were on social media.

Originally a brilliant student at school, a member of the swimming team and living a happy life, Ian began to gradually become depressed since increasing his interaction with social networks. Ian’s mother, Jennifer Mitchell, did not pay much attention until one day in August 2019, her son committed suicide.

“I didn’t notice the little things when my kids said things like ‘You’re just a burden to everyone,'” Mrs. Mitchell sobbed as she accused the social network itself of its controversial, attractive algorithm. more interactive care about the psychological health of the user took Ian’s life.

Data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) shows that Ian is just one of many cases of mental health decline among young people in the country. The suicide rate in the United States between the ages of 10 and 19 has increased by 45.5% between 2010 and 2020.

The latest survey in February 2023 found that nearly 33% of young women in the US had ever seriously thought about taking their own lives, much higher than 20% in 2011.

Youtube, Tiktok, Facebook are destroying American youth, more and more people are joining the movement to delete social network accounts - Photo 2.

Error at Youtube?

The FT reports that many parents and policymakers accuse the social media giants of developing addictive algorithms and targeting issues of controversy, hate, hatred and guilt. themselves to increase interactions without regard to their consequences with young people.

But social networks counter that they help people build more relationships, communicate more, and even create a career for a part of young people.

However, all experts agree that modern smartphones, high-speed Internet and social networking applications are affecting young brains, increasing anxiety, depression and disorders. mentality.

“There have been many cases of psychological trauma caused by social networks and all have the same scenario,” said New York University psychology professor Jonathan Haidt.

Even US President Joe Biden himself has accused current social networking platforms of doing business “in the interests of our children”, and proposed passing a law banning these applications from collecting revenue. data collection of minors.

Going back to Ian’s case, his family is one of 147 lawsuits filed by US citizens with social networking platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, Tiktok, Snapchat and Youtube.

During the hearing before the Parliament, CEO Shou Zi Chew of Tiktok even affirmed that his children should not touch the platform in the face of pressure to protect young people.

“Mr. Chew, your company has ruined the lives of children,” one congressman said directly to the CEO of Tiktok during the hearing.

Ironically, the FT survey shows that Youtube (Google) is the social networking platform that American youth aged 13-17 spend the most time on, Tiktok is only 2nd.

Not only the US, ministers in the UK are also planning to pass new legislation to fine or even jail CEOs of social networks when they fail to protect the lives of minors.


Hackensack Meridian Health (HMH) in New Jersey is a popular psychiatric treatment center for minors, and its reservation list started to grow 3 years ago.

Similarly, a nearby hospital saw a 49% increase in the number of minors seeking psychological counseling in 2022.

“Children talk a lot about bullying on social media and how excessive cell phone use affects them,” says HMH’s Dr. Thomas Ricart.

Youtube, Tiktok, Facebook are destroying American youth, more and more people are joining the movement to delete social network accounts - Photo 3.

In January 2023, a study by psychologists at the University of North Carolina showed that the human brain will not fully develop until the age of 25, and adolescents who are exposed to too much social media will suffer from depression. ideological deviation.

Similarly in August 2022, the International Association for Research in Public Health (IJERPH) published 68 studies showing that the rate of depression in patients will increase with the amount of time spent on social networks.

Even a trial in California was held when the plaintiffs said that social networks knew they had an adverse effect on children’s psychological health but hid the truth.

Specifically, the plaintiffs allege that Meta, Tiktok, Snapchat or Youtube used psycho-behavioral techniques and neurotechnologies of tobacco and gambling to make children addicted to their products.

The creation of algorithms that collect data and cram interesting content that young people can’t stop. With their algorithms, social networks have made young brains to secrete more addictive Dopamine, and at the same time create constant notifications to retain attention. While understanding this harm, the platforms have not built a control mechanism for parents and left everyone to fend for themselves.

“Likes on social media have replaced real friendship in real life. Surfing kills creativity and sports. Despite the name ‘social networks’, these platforms promote abandonment of social connections, divide communities and adversely affect both mental and physical health of young people,” the report of the source said. stated in the California lawsuit.

Douglas Westwood, one of the parents involved in the lawsuit, said his 9-year-old daughter has been glued to Instagram for months after being bought for a smartphone, even though they initially just wanted to have it. means of communication to ensure the safety of children.

“I just can’t understand how a 9-year-old girl can open a social media account. They should have had an age limit, but there’s no barrier or regulation here,” Westwood said.

Wetwood’s anger is well-founded when social media and its paradoxical beauty standards cause his son to become depressed at the age of 14 and hospitalized for anorexia because he wants to be thin. . Although Westwood’s child recovered by the age of 17, many sequelae were still there.

What’s more frustrating is that no one is responsible for cases like Mr. Westwood’s. Loose laws make social networks not responsible even if they are the perpetrators.

Do not care

“No one notices that they want to spend more time on Instagram when they wake up. But this is exactly what our product development team is trying to do every day,” a Meta employee admitted in 2021.

An internal survey in June 2020 by Meta found that 500,000 active Instagram accounts every day are related to children, but protecting the safety of these objects is not a priority at all.

“If we do something to protect the children, that’s fine, but it’s okay if we don’t, nobody cares,” admitted one Meta employee.

In the case of former Meta employee Frances Haugen revealing company secrets, numerous criticisms have taken place with this social network.

“Facebook is afraid that if they implement child protection policies in front of other social networks, it will create bad consequences, like people will say: ‘Oh Instagram is that dangerous? We should stay away from it’. The board of directors doesn’t want that to happen,” Haugen admitted.

Youtube, Tiktok, Facebook are destroying American youth, more and more people are joining the movement to delete social network accounts - Photo 4.

Faced with this situation, the movement to remove Facebook and Instagram accounts is rising strongly in the US and Europe.

In Minnesota, a bill to ban social media targeting children under 18 is under consideration, with fines of up to $1,000 per violation.

In Utah, the state has passed a law requiring age verification of social media users. Children under 18 will need parental permission to open a social media account from 2024.

Similar laws are being considered by Texas and Ohio.

“If I could do something for other parents to prevent a tragic situation like mine, I would,” said Ms. Mitchell as she persevered in her campaign to boycott social media.

*Source: FT

#Youtube #Tiktok #Facebook #destroying #American #youth #people #joining #movement #delete #social #media #accounts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *