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Home » Montgomery County Public Schools join lawsuit against social media companies

Capitol Communicator reports that a federal judge refused to dismiss a lawsuit alleging that Meta, Google, TikTok and Snapchat harmed teens.

Montgomery County Public Schools join lawsuit against social media companies

by | Jun 14, 2023

Montgomery County Public Schools in Maryland joined 500 school districts nationwide in a lawsuit filed in Federal District Court in San Francisco against Meta, TikTok, Snap, YouTube, and other social media companies. In the lawsuit the plaintiff school districts allege that these companies are knowingly causing emotional harm to children through their platforms, states a release from Frantz Law Group.

The release adds that with over 160,550 students in 210 schools, Montgomery County Public Schools “is the largest school district in the state of Maryland. The lawsuit alleges that various social media companies have caused a mental and emotional health crisis marked by higher proportions of anxiety, depression, thoughts of self-harm, body dissatisfaction, disordered eating behaviors, and low self-esteem among children and students. Many are further subjected to often harmful, exploitative and addictive content that encourages disorderly behavior, unhealthy social comparison, and cyberbullying. This litigation seeks to provide the funding and staffing resources needed to mitigate the damage that school districts are currently encountering.

“In May of this year, U.S. Surgeon General Dr. Vivek Murthy issued a new Advisory on Social Media and Youth Mental Health, in which he states, “…there is growing evidence that social media use is associated with harm to young people’s mental health.” The Advisory cites research finding that one-third or more of girls aged 11-15 say they feel “addicted” to certain social media platforms, that 46% of adolescents aged 13-17 said social media makes them feel worse, and that 64% of adolescents are “often” or “sometimes” exposed to hate-based content through social media. The Advisory also points to studies that show “a relationship between social media use and poor sleep quality, reduced sleep duration, sleep difficulties, and depression among youth.”

“Moreover, in October 2021, former Meta employee Frances Haugen testified before Congress that Meta’s own internal research indicated how harmful their products are to the mental health of child users and, in particular, teenage girls.”

More here.

Photo provided by Frantz Law Group (PRNewsfoto/Frantz Law Group)

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Capitol Communicator

Capitol Communicator is a unique online and offline resource for Mid-Atlantic advertising, marketing, public relations, digital and media communications professionals. The e-magazine, e-newsletters and events bring together communications professionals, fostering community and providing important information; news; trends; education; and opportunities for networking, career enhancement, business exchange and showcasing great work. Get more information by clicking on Capitol Communicator above.

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