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State lawmakers push to regulate teen social media use in New York: How would it work?

  • / Updated:
  • Staff Report 

Lawmakers are making a renewed effort to pass bills aimed at regulating social media use by teens. The proposed legislation, which fell out of state budget talks in April, seeks to address the negative impact of social media on youth mental health by June 6, the end of the legislative session.

Finger Lakes Partners (Billboard)

Supporters, including Gov. Kathy Hochul and state Assemblywoman Nily Rozic, argue that social media algorithms contribute to addictive behaviors among teens. The bills would require platforms to display information chronologically rather than algorithmically. Rozic emphasized the urgent need to alleviate the trauma associated with excessive social media use, citing strong support from over 90 co-sponsors in the Assembly.

Critics, like Adam Kovacevich of the Chamber of Progress, argue that algorithmic feeds provide healthier content and worry that banning them could expose teens to more harmful material. Despite opposition, Rozic remains hopeful that the legislation will be considered by relevant committees in the coming weeks. If passed, New York would join other states in enforcing stricter regulations on social media companies.