Facebook has taken on the task of building a version of Instagram for users under 13. This is according to a post that was meant to stay internal to the company. Apparently, one of Instagram’s higher-ups wrote a post on the employee message board to announce the project.
The post mentioned that the new project is going to be overseen by the Head of Instagram, Adam Mosseri, but the leader will be Facebook VP Pavni Diwanji. Diwanji has experience working with children-oriented services, such as YouTube Kids and other children-focused products at Google.
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. 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.Shah via Internal Facebook Post
This news comes only a few days after Instagram had announced new features meant to protect kids on the popular platform.
Now, users under 13 can’t use the app under COPPA rules. This, of course, has not prevented kids from using false birthdays to circumvent the feature.
Instagram knows this, so this is why the company is developing advanced machine learning-based technologies to help protect under-age users.
Now, adults can no longer DM or users that are under 18 if those users are not following them. The platform is able to do this by looking at the users’ claimed age and applying machine learning software that predicts people’s actual age.
Also, these new changes are going to make it more difficult for adults to find teens in the first place because it’s going to remove under-age users from Instagram’s Suggested Users, Reels, and Explore sections. It will also hide the comments of users’ comments on posts by teenagers.