London, April 29: By instilling in children dangerous ideas of perfection, social media platforms such as Instagram and Snapchat are fuelling eating disorders among teenagers, a British Cabinet Minister has warned.
Education Secretary Damian Hinds demanded that technology giants must “get serious” about their responsibility and protect their young users, The Sun reported on Monday.
His warning comes as several Cabinet ministers are scheduled to hold a meeting with Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and Snapchat bosses, the report added.
“It’s time for social media companies to get serious about their responsibility to young people,” Hinds was quoted as saying by The Sun.
Hinds said social media is impacting the attitude of teenagers to their own bodies and putting pressure on them about how they should act and look all the time.
“Growing up has always been hard, but the Internet and social media heighten the pressures,” Hinds added.
At the summit with the bosses of the social media giants, the British ministers are expected to demand that tech companies take down harmful content — not just illegal content.
“This isn’t just about tackling illegal content, but things that are legal but still harmful to wellbeing,” Hinds was quoted as saying.