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California Attorney General Announces Nationwide Investigation into TikTok

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The following is a press release issued by the California Attorney General Rob Bonta’s Office

California Attorney General Rob Bonta today announced a nationwide investigation into TikTok for promoting its social media platform to children and young adults while its use is associated with physical and mental health harms to youth. Attorneys generals nationwide are examining whether the company is violating state consumer protection laws and putting children at risk. 

“Our children are growing up in the age of social media – and many feel like they need to measure up to the filtered versions of reality that they see on their screens,” said Attorney General Bonta. “We know this takes a devastating toll on children’s mental health and well-being. But we don’t know what social media companies knew about these harms and when. Our nationwide investigation will allow us to get much-needed answers and determine if TikTok is violating the law in promoting its platform to young Californians.” 

The investigation will look into the harms using TikTok can cause to young users and what TikTok knew about those harms. The investigation focuses, among other things, on the techniques utilized by TikTok to boost young user engagement, including strategies or efforts to increase the duration of time spent on the platform and frequency of engagement with the platform.

Attorney General Bonta is committed to holding social media companies accountable, particularly when their actions may cause harm to California’s youngest residents. In November, Attorney General Bonta announced a nationwide investigation into Meta for providing and promoting its social media platform — Instagram — to children and young adults despite knowing that such use is associated with physical and mental health harms. Attorney General Bonta also co-led a bipartisan coalition in expressing support for hearings in the U.S. Senate on “Protecting Kids Online: Facebook, Instagram, and Mental Health Harms.” Earlier that year, Attorney General Bonta joined 43 attorneys general in urging Meta to abandon plans to launch a version of Instagram for children under the age of 13. Following heavy criticism and shocking new reports from Wall Street Journal and other publications, Meta announced in September that it would pause development of the new platform.

Leading the investigation is a bipartisan coalition of attorneys general from California, Florida, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Nebraska, New Jersey, Tennessee, and Vermont. They are joined by a broad group of attorneys general from across the country.

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3 COMMENTS

  1. Mental health harm comes from trauma, not media. Dead brain syndrome comes from filtered media. I have an idea! Lets bring back the Dark Ages.

  2. “Attorney General Bonta is committed to holding social media companies accountable”
    how about twitter, youtoube, google and FB for censorship???
    it’s one of those 1rst A kinda thangs AG Bonta. recall that oath you took???

  3. Your worried about TikTok?? How about other social media sites tv magazines and other people? This is a joke. Worry about how we can keep drugs out of our schools and off our streets. How about education for the kids and parents how not to fall in the trap of all of this. California is a joke and most of these political leaders are stepping over boundaries they need to step back from.

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Matt LaFever
Matt LaFeverhttps://mendofever.com/
Educator🔸Reporter for KMUD/ Redheaded Blackbelt/Founder of Cold Case Mendocino🔹Local News Junkie

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