Arkansas AG Rutledge joins investigation into Instagram’s impact on adolescent users

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FILE – In this Nov. 29, 2018, file photo, the Instagram app logo is displayed on a mobile screen in Los Angeles. A group of state attorneys general are investigating the photo-sharing platform Instagram and its effects on children and young adults, saying its parent company Facebook — now called Meta Platforms — ignored internal research about the physical and mental health dangers it posed to young people. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes, File)

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) — Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge joined a nationwide investigation November 18 into Meta Platforms, Inc., formerly known as Facebook.

According to a news release from the Rutledge’s office, Meta has been “providing and promoting its social media platform – Instagram – to children and young adults despite knowing it has been associated with physical and mental health harms”.

The release says Rutledge and the coalition of attorneys general are examining whether the company violated state consumer protection laws, including the Arkansas Deceptive Trade Practices Act.

“Big tech’s influence on our society has led our youth to believing their self-worth is based on likes and views,” Rutledge said. “As a mother of a young daughter, it’s important to thoroughly investigate big tech for their impact they are having on our children and hold them accountable for their actions.

The release says the investigation targets the techniques utilized by Meta to increase the frequency and duration of engagement by young users and the resulting harms caused by such extended engagement.

Leading the investigation is a coalition of attorneys general from California, Florida, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Nebraska, New Jersey, Tennessee, and Vermont.

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