Instagram head Adam Mosseri announced that the company is developing a version of Instagram aimed at children under the age of 13, BuzzFeedNews reported. Currently, children under 13 are not allowed to use the app due to federal privacy regulations.
“I’m excited to announce that going forward, we have identified youth work as a priority for Instagram and have added it to our H1 priority list,” Vishal Shah, Instagram’s vice president of product, wrote on an employee message board on Thursday.
“We will be building a new youth pillar within the Community Product Group to focus on two things: (a) accelerating our integrity and privacy work to ensure the safest possible experience for teens and (b) building a version of Instagram that allows people under the age of 13 to safely use Instagram for the first time.”
The news comes two days after Instagram mentioned the need to do more to protect teenagers on its platform. The company published a blog post on Tuesday about “Continuing to Make Instagram Safer for the Youngest Members of Our Community.”
Adam Mosseri took to Twitter to note that kids asking their parents to join the photo-sharing app is increasing. He mentioned exploring a version of Instagram with parental control and will “share more down the road.”
Kids are increasingly asking their parents if they can join apps that help them keep up with their friends. A version of Instagram where parents have control, like we did w/ Messenger Kids, is something we’re exploring. We’ll share more down the road.— Adam Mosseri 😷 (@mosseri) March 18, 2021
Facebook, Instagram’s parent company, launched Messenger Kids back in 2017, aimed at children between the age of 6 and 12. After the launch, more than 95 advocates for children’s health called on Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg to discontinue the product. They backlashed the product saying “excessive use of digital devices and social media is harmful to children and teens, making it very likely this new app will undermine children’s healthy development.”