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Under scrutiny, social media platforms make vague promises to Congress

As pressure builds to make it clear how their products are affecting the mental and physical health of young users, officials at Snapchat, TikTok and YouTube on Tuesday pledged to work with Congress to create new safeguards for the industry. social media.

In most cases, officials from the three companies have refused to approve specific legislative proposals, although Michael Beckerman, TikTok’s public policy manager, said the company supports a bipartisan Sense bill. Edward J. Markey, D-Mass., And Ben Sasse, R-Neb., Who would provide federal funding for research into the effects of social media on children.

But officials from the three companies said they would work with lawmakers on proposals to protect children from harmful content, preserve their privacy and revise a 1996 law known as Section 230 that protects children. platforms against lawsuits related to third party content.

They also said they would provide internal research on how teenage users interact with their platforms and expressed their openness to granting external access to their algorithms.

The hearing before the Senate Trade Committee’s consumer protection subgroup came as lawmakers redouble their efforts to curb social media companies following a slew of explosive reports from across the media landscape on internal searches for Facebook, the social media giant lawmakers consider most ripe for regulation.

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