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Teens could be banned from Facebook, Snapchat, Instagram in 2016

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Teenagers have enough to worry about without being shunted off social media too…

Anyone under the age of 16 could be banned from social media services, under newly reformed EU proposals.

The European Union is considering new regulations that would see teens shut out of platforms like Facebook, Snapchat, and Instagram.

If they want to access the services, they’ll need to seek parental permission first.

The law is already enforced for users under the age of 13, a mandate that’s upheld by Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, Google, and Instagram.

However, the newly amended proposals will see that age cap lifted to 16, bringing millions more under the ban’s umbrella.

The law will be debated over starting on Tuesday, and will be voted on this Thursday.

If the parliament decides to go ahead with the proposals, the law could be ratified as soon as 2016.

Countries are then given two years to comply with the new laws, as noted by the Telegraph.

Any company found in breach of enforcing the legislation could be fined up to 4% of its annual turnover.

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While the proposals are with the safety of teenagers in mind, several groups have attacked the move, including the Diana Award Youth Board.

“The higher age threshold may incentivise children between the ages of 13 and 15 to lie about their age,” writes the DAYB, in an open letter. “Children aged 13 and above have long accessed online services; an artificial and sudden change to this threshold will likely result in many children between the ages of 13 and 15 lying about their ages in order to continue accessing online services – rather than asking their parents to consent.”

It continues: “This development would make it far more difficult for online services to offer children age-appropriate guidance and tools to ensure a safe and privacy-protective experience online.”

There’s also a petition against the amended regulation on Change.org.

What do you make of the proposals? Let us know in the comments.

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