Instagram launches new tools aimed at teen safety

Instagram has announced new features and tools for teenagers and their parents, aimed at improving online safety.

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In a blog post on the social media site, Instagram announced their “Take A Break” feature is now live in the United States, U.K., Ireland, Canada, New Zealand and Australia. “Take A Break” alerts someone who has been scrolling for a long period of time with a suggestion to take a break from the app. According to Instagram, early test results for the program show once teens set reminders using the “Take A Break” feature, more than 90% keep them on.

Instagram also announced new features the company is developing to make the app safer for teens, including no longer allowing people to tag or mention teens that don’t follow them, and changing what content Instagram recommends to teens.

These changes are part of changes that Instagram, owned by Meta Platforms (formerly Facebook), has put in place after a whistleblower revealed internal research that showed the app can harm users’ mental health, NPR reported. On Wednesday, Instagram head Adam Mosseri is scheduled to testify about these issues before the Senate Subcommittee on Consumer Protection, NPR reported.

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