Why we’re saying NO to 'Insta for Kids'
Instagram has failed to fix its long-standing and widespread child exploitation and predator problems. Now it wants people to hand their kids over for a new under-13s platform.
In March, Buzzfeed reported on an internal Instagram post revealing Facebook’s plan to develop an Instagram for Kids. Facebook later confirmed its intentions to roll out the new, under-13s social media platform - dubbed Instagram Youth - which CEO Adam Mosseri said will have most of the same features of Instagram, with added parent controls.
But kids aren’t safe on Instagram - even on ‘parent monitored’ accounts. Here’s a tiny sample of what we’ve documented on Instagram:
- A 9 year old girl in an Instagram ‘live’ joined by a succession of men - some naked - masturbating to her. Her mother’s voice could be heard in the background.
- A 7-8 year old girl's Instagram account used to advertise her content for sale on other platforms. Descriptions include ‘white negligee’ and ‘black transparent dress’.
- A mother selling subscriptions to access naked, ‘bikini’ and ‘car wash’ images and videos of her 13 year old daughter. (She claimed the girl was not naked, she was wearing a bikini behind the strategically placed vase or foot stool or foil strips).
- A pre-teen girl posed in lingerie and fetish wear. Her content was featured across multiple accounts including one which gave access to child sexual exploitation material featuring the girl and other children. Others offered content for sale via subscriptions on Boosty and Patreon, and through a Telegram chat group.
- A 10 year old girl whose content is frequently re-shared to ‘shout out’ pages where men make sex abuse remarks such as ‘I would like to f*ck you so hard’.
- A 12-13 year old girl whose Instagram bio links to a website where men can buy her bikini posters and calendars.
- A 9 year old girl whose mother posted images of her in bikinis and participating in challenges including the porn-themed ‘black tape project’. (The challenge involved the sharing of images of women posed nude apart from strips of black tape stuck to their bodies.)
Comments on underage girls’ Instagram posts confirm our worst fears: Men can hardly wait for the girls to turn 18 and transition to OnlyFans and porn.
Despite backlash from anti sexploitation and child safety advocates, a global campaign led by US-based Campaign for a Commercial Free Childhood which we've joined, and a letter signed by 44 US state Attorneys General, Facebook insists it’s marching forward with its plans.
We’re saying NO to Instagram for Kids. Instagram has facilitated widespread sexualisation, predation, harassment and exploitation of underage girls, and profited. Girls deserve better.
Sign and share the petition calling on Facebook to dump its plans for Instagram for Kids here. Deadline May 24.