Instagram launches ‘Take a Break,’ other features for teens


(IANS) After whistleblower Frances Haugen leaked internal company research suggesting Instagram’s negative effect on teenagers, the Meta-owned photo-sharing platform on Tuesday launched a ‘Take a Break’ and other safety features for teenagers.

The company has currently launched the feature in the US, UK, Ireland, Canada, Australia and New Zealand to empower people to make informed decisions about how they are spending their time.

“If someone has been scrolling for a certain amount of time, we will ask them to take a break from Instagram and suggest that they set reminders to take more breaks in the future. We will also show them expert-backed tips to help them reflect and reset,” Adam Mosseri, Head of Instagram, said in a blogpost.

The feature reminders build on the company’s existing time management tools including Daily Limit, which lets people know when they have reached the total amount of time they want to spend on Instagram each day and offers the ability to mute notifications from Instagram.

The company said that it is also starting to test a new experience for people to see and manage their Instagram activity.

“We know that as teens grow up, they want more control over how they show up both online and offline so, for the first time, they will be able to bulk delete content they have posted like photos and videos, as well as their previous likes and comments,” Mosseri said.

The company will also switch off the ability for people to tag or mention teens who do not follow them, or to include their content in Reels Remixes or Guides by default when they first join Instagram.

Instagram will also be launching tools for parents and guardians early next year to help them get more involved in their teen’s experiences on Instagram. Parents and guardians will be able to see how much time their teens spend on Instagram and set time limits.

Recently, Haugen testified before the US Congress that Instagram can have a negative effect on the mental health of teenagers.

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