Facebook is building an Instagram for kids under 13

The social media company is planning to build a 'parent-controlled' platform for young users.

Facebook is building an Instagram for kids under 13
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Facebook is building a version of Instagram for children under the age of 13.

BuzzFeed News first reported that the social media company announced the news in an internal post.

"I'm excited to announce that going forward, we have identified youth work as a priority for Instagram and have added it to our H1 priority list," Vishal Shah, Instagram's vice president of product, wrote on an employee message board, according to BuzzFeed.

"We will be building a new youth pillar within the Community Product Group to focus on two things: (a) accelerating our integrity and privacy work to ensure the safest possible experience for teens and (b) building a version of Instagram that allows people under the age of 13 to safely use Instagram for the first time."


Instagram's current policy doesn't allow children 12 and under to create accounts.

A spokesperson for Facebook has confirmed the news to The Guardian. Facebook is building a "parent-controlled" version of Instagram for young kids, similar to the Messenger Kids app that is available for kids between the ages of six and twelve.

"Increasingly kids are asking their parents if they can join apps that help them keep up with their friends. Right now, there aren't many options for parents, so we're working on building additional products … that are suitable for kids, managed by parents," the spokesperson told The Guardian.

"We're exploring bringing a parent-controlled experience to Instagram to help kids keep up with their friends, discover new hobbies and interests, and more."

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Last week, Facebook also announced that it would be adding more safety features for teens to the main app. Adults will no longer be able to message minors who don't already follow them. Minors will also be alerted if they interact with adults who have "been exhibiting suspicious behavior," such as sending "a large amount of friend or message requests to people under 18."

The updates for teens will be available in some countries by the end of the month. There's no word yet when the new platform for children will be available.

Jamie Orsini is an Emmy Award-winning journalist, military spouse, and a mom to two busy toddlers. In her spare time, Jamie volunteers with the Solar System Ambassador program with NASA/JPL and reads anything she can get her hands on. She’s currently working on her first novel.

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