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Children’s Online Safety Bill in NY, Enactment of Data Delete Act in CA & More

October 13, 2023 (2 min read)

New York Joins Fight to Protect Children Online

New York Gov. Kathy Hochul (D), Attorney General Letitia James (D), Sen. Andrew Gounardes (D) and Assemblywoman Nily Rozic (D) announced legislation last week that would prohibit minors from accessing algorithm-based social media feeds without parental consent.

The Stop Addictive Feeds Exploitation (SAFE) for Kids Act would also allow parents to block their children’s access to social media platforms from midnight to 6 a.m., prohibit social media platforms from sending notifications to minors during that time period without parental consent and allow parents to sue violators for damages of up to $5,000 per incident or actual damages if those are greater.

The bill could be considered by lawmakers as soon as January when they convene for their next session. And the fact that Hochul took part in the measure’s unveiling, which she rarely does, suggests it might make its way through the Democrat-controlled state Legislature.

But other states including Arkansas and California have passed similar legislation that has been temporarily blocked by federal judges after being challenged by tech industry groups. And New York’s measure is likely to face the same resistance.

Another bill announced the same day, the New York Child Data Protection Act, would “prohibit all online sites from collecting, using, sharing, or selling personal data of anyone under the age of 18” without parental consent, according to a press release. (NEW YORK TIMES, NEW YORK GOVERNOR’S OFFICE, STATE NET)

CA Enacts Data Delete Act

California Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) signed legislation (SB 362) that will make his state the first in the nation to give consumers the option of requesting the mass deletion of the information data brokers have collected about them. The Delete Act provides for the establishment by 2026 of a government website where consumers will be able to request that action from the over 500 data brokers registered with the state. Legal experts say the policy change will impact a broad range of industries ranging from banking to health care. (LAW360)

CA Enacts Bill Targeting Sexual Exploitation of Children on Social Media

California Governor Gavin Newsom has signed a bill (AB 1394) that will make social media platforms liable for “knowingly facilitating, aiding, or abetting commercial sexual exploitation” of minors. The measure will require courts to award statutory damages of between $1 million and $4 million for each instance of such exploitation. (COURTHOUSE NEWS SERVICE, STATE NET)

UT AG Sues TikTok

Utah Attorney General Sean Reyes (R) filed a lawsuit accusing social media platform TikTok of harming children by employing features designed to keep them using its app. Indiana’s AG sued TikTok last December, and about 75 percent of states have banned the use of TikTok on state-owned devices. (PLURIBUS NEWS)

NJ Gov Creates AI Task Force

New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy (D) issued an executive order establishing an Artificial Intelligence Task Force. The task force will examine the potential benefits of AI, including how it can help the state’s economy and boost academic research, as well as recommend actions “to encourage the ethical and responsible use of artificial intelligence technologies.” (NJ.COM)

—Compiled by SNCJ Managing Editor KOREY CLARK


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