Sen. Klobuchar discusses social media policy concerns with Minnesota parents

For better or worse social media consumers our daily lives, and while adults may be better equipped to handle the responsibility of navigating the platforms, children are assuredly more vulnerable.

Posted: Oct 14, 2021 4:32 PM
Updated: Oct 14, 2021 5:59 PM

ROCHESTER, Minn. - For better or worse social media consumers our daily lives, and while adults may be better equipped to handle the responsibility of navigating the platforms, children are assuredly more vulnerable.

That’s why U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar is setting out to address content and privacy concerns regarding digital platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and TikTok.

FILE - The Instagram app is displayed on a computer on Aug. 23, 2019, in New York. Instagram is putting a pause on its Instagram Kids platform, geared towards children under 13, so it can address concerns about accessibility and content. Adam Mosseri, the FILE - The Instagram app is displayed on a computer on Aug. 23, 2019, in New York. Instagram is putting a pause on its Instagram Kids platform, geared towards children under 13, so it can address concerns about accessibility and content. Adam Mosseri, the

Klobuchar held a virtual roundtable discussion with Minnesota parents on Thursday to address concerns as social media is integrated into school curriculum and used daily by teenagers, and even children, to keep in touch with friends.

Parent Natalie Kennedy shared during the discussion, “While I can eliminate social media for my daughter, I can take away her phone, I can take away those apps, I can't remove the fact that this is part of her reality that she's growing into. So, removing it now doesn't mean so much if she doesn't learn to manage it responsibly.”

It’s a concern shared by fellow Minnesota mom Mara Hanel. She added, “Our girls are preyed upon on Instagram. So if, as a parent, I could have information on how to make sure they have the correct setting or it comes in as that correct setting then they won't have anyone they don't want to be looking at their images as the default.”

Klobuchar is working to hold social media platforms accountable; from algorithms that promote troubling content to harmful misinformation and data mining, there are many areas she believes need change.

“We know the consequences are so serious with eating disorders, and the like, and part of what I want to get are solutions,” explained Klobuchar. “The first solution is better privacy protections because we know people don't really want their data to be used. “

The senator says some of the first steps include enhancing privacy laws, allowing users greater control over their data, and bringing a market approach to social media platforms.

She said, “One solution to this, in addition to regulation, is allowing the market - allowing new companies to blossom that have more protection on them or by making sure young kids aren't even using their products by making people register for who they are.”

Klobuchar has already co-sponsored the Health Misinformation Act which targets a provision of the Communications Decency Act that protects platforms from being held liable for what their users post in most cases.

In a news release, Klobuchar also says she's sent several letters to the leaders of Facebook, Twitter, Google, and Youtube calling on them to take action to stop the spread of false and misleading information related to Coronavirus vaccines.

Minnesota Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 895229

Reported Deaths: 9462
CountyCasesDeaths
Hennepin1749772017
Ramsey722701040
Dakota66032572
Anoka62513568
Washington39357355
Stearns32821275
St. Louis28761399
Wright25354211
Scott25329181
Olmsted21750127
Sherburne18478126
Carver1629166
Clay11923103
Blue Earth1126366
Rice11234138
Crow Wing11003122
Chisago974676
Kandiyohi9660106
Otter Tail9611126
Benton8815124
Beltrami801794
Goodhue786596
Douglas7689100
Itasca752796
Mower721349
Winona702756
McLeod694483
Isanti681383
Steele669431
Morrison663479
Becker620873
Polk591684
Freeborn550846
Carlton529474
Nobles521654
Lyon518761
Mille Lacs516573
Nicollet510960
Pine500641
Cass491252
Todd483642
Brown465057
Le Sueur445933
Meeker422357
Martin378143
Wabasha366010
Waseca365132
Dodge351511
Hubbard349848
Roseau307931
Fillmore299115
Wadena298239
Redwood277845
Houston266817
Renville264151
Faribault253032
Pennington247529
Sibley246917
Kanabec241536
Cottonwood225032
Chippewa216342
Aitkin215850
Pope203210
Watonwan194920
Yellow Medicine185423
Rock174728
Swift169322
Koochiching168123
Stevens164511
Jackson159216
Clearwater155720
Marshall151122
Murray150911
Pipestone148329
Lake129824
Lac qui Parle120025
Wilkin119416
Mahnomen104714
Norman10389
Grant9719
Big Stone9365
Lincoln8705
Kittson71523
Red Lake70710
Traverse5996
Unassigned572124
Lake of the Woods5235
Cook3020

Iowa Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 516453

Reported Deaths: 7289
CountyCasesDeaths
Polk80319799
Linn32142424
Scott26637292
Black Hawk21974378
Woodbury20490258
Johnson19778105
Dubuque18515241
Pottawattamie15890213
Dallas15320113
Story1380258
Warren8450104
Cerro Gordo7964123
Clinton7725114
Webster7326122
Des Moines7098105
Marshall669093
Muscatine6645117
Wapello6441144
Jasper619591
Sioux610177
Lee5908105
Marion557897
Buena Vista502149
Plymouth488388
Henry418655
Benton404859
Jones404862
Bremer395372
Washington391463
Boone389739
Carroll367755
Mahaska365365
Crawford353747
Dickinson314655
Jackson307747
Buchanan305741
Clay295536
Delaware294654
Kossuth289077
Fayette286353
Hardin284353
Tama279777
Page272533
Wright266149
Cedar265527
Hamilton259857
Winneshiek258143
Floyd255449
Clayton244459
Poweshiek237243
Madison234525
Harrison234379
Cass233466
Butler232744
Iowa229634
Jefferson223043
Mills220930
Winnebago215938
Hancock214639
Cherokee211347
Lyon206142
Appanoose205357
Allamakee203955
Calhoun196919
Shelby196442
Union191141
Humboldt185130
Grundy183637
Franklin183029
Mitchell182043
Chickasaw178922
Emmet178246
Louisa176953
Sac171026
Guthrie168137
Montgomery161745
Clarke160829
Keokuk150839
Palo Alto150532
Howard146824
Monroe142739
Ida130141
Greene127517
Davis124625
Lucas124426
Monona122939
Worth12139
Pocahontas120724
Adair114337
Osceola104818
Decatur101913
Taylor98514
Fremont95913
Van Buren93222
Wayne84525
Ringgold76729
Audubon74917
Adams5748
Unassigned480
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