Bobseine seeks social media protections for youth

Mike Bobseine, the Democratic Party and Working Families Party Candidate for the Assembly seat currently held by retiring Assmblymember Andy Goodell, supports state legislation to provide social media protections for children.

“We know from recent polling and data collected by social media companies that our children are spending many hours involved with social media. The social media companies are collecting personal information without consent or adult supervision, employing algorithms that feed addictive behavior and too often expose our children to potentially dangerous materials and experiences,” said Bobseine.

“I join New York Attorney General Tish James in her efforts to enact the SAFE for Kids Act and the Child Data Protection Act. The SAFE for Kids Act will restrict addictive feed algorithms that keep kids on platforms for extended periods of time; require parental consent for users under 18; and obligate the social media companies to make their algorithms more transparent.

“The Child Data Protection Act will stop companies from collecting personal data from users under 12 without parental consent, and from users under 18 without informed consent. Companies will have to have data protection mechanisms for all children and cannot allow use of their platform to companies that violate the consent requirements.”

Bobseine, who served on the Fredonia Central School Board for 12 years, represented children and families as an attorney, and was a Family Court Magistrate for over 10 years, said that these legislative proposals are essential to protect our children.

“I recently attended a school board meeting where the High School Principal reported on data and studies indicating the harmful effects on students due to social media. The Principal, who has years of teaching and administrative experience, said that teachers, staff, parents, and students themselves are concerned about the immediate and long- term consequences of social media exposure, algorithm-driven addictive behavior, and unwarranted personal data collection.

“I encourage passage of these bills in this legislative session. However, if not enacted this year, I will do everything possible to co-sponsor and push for their adoption beginning next January if I am the Assemblymember after the November election,” Bobseine concluded.


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