A lawsuit has been filed by Maryland Attorney General Anthony Brown and 41 other states against Meta Platforms Inc., which owns and operates Facebook and Instagram, claiming that the social media platforms’ harmful business practices are targeting children.
According to Patch, Maryland is one of 42 states that have filed a federal lawsuit against Meta, alleging the social media giant is responsible for harming young people’s mental health and has contributed to a mental health crisis among the country’s youth.
“A child’s mental health and emotional development help determine how they will see and cope with the world around them, and an addiction to social media disrupts that critical development,” Brown said. “We believe that Meta has manipulated their social media platforms to attract and addict young people, without regard for how using applications like Instagram will negatively affect children and deepen the mental health crisis afflicting our nation’s youth.”
The 233-page lawsuit, filed in federal court in California on behalf of the states, including Maryland, claims Meta “knowingly designed” harmful features on Instagram and Facebook that make children and teens addicted to the platform.