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Bill requires parental approval for minors to create social media accounts


(The Center Square) – A new Tennessee bill will require social media companies to verify the age of an individual creating an account and would require express consent from a parent or guardian for a minor to create an account.

Senate Bill 2097, the Protecting Children from Social Media Act, pass the Senate Commerce and Labor Committee and will next head to the full Senate.

“The evidence is clear: social media has harmful effects for children, teens and young adults,” said Sen. Jack Johnson, R-Franklin. “Oftentimes young children create social media accounts without their parent’s knowledge or consent. The unsupervised use of social media by children is not only inappropriate but can be potentially harmful to those children.”

The bill comes from Gov. Bill Lee’s office and would go into effect Jan. 1, 2025.

It also requires social media companies to allow parents access to monitor the account with privacy settings, daily time restrictions and creating breaks where the minor cannot use the social media.

It also allows the Tennessee attorney general to bring action against the company for a violation and allows the attorney general to recover the costs of bringing the action.

“This legislation puts parents back in the driver’s seat of their children’s social media usage,” Johnson said. “It lays out clear steps social media companies must take to verify the ages of users to protect Tennessee children and empower parents.”