Brian Levine, director of the UMass Rescue Lab, which researches and combats online child victimization, expressed concern that even if Instagram were to begin restricting reach and access, the popular social media platform is almost a “gateway drug” to much worse corners of the internet. “Instagram is an on ramp to places on the internet where there’s more explicit child sexual abuse,” Levine said. That fact alone makes Instagram’s dereliction of duty in squelching the promotion of pedophilia a sore spot for him. When told that Meta and Instagram were working on safeguards against pedophilia, Levine responded with derision. “Pull the emergency brake,” he said. “Are the economic benefits worth the harms to these children?” Meta, for its part, said it was looking into the situation but also admitted a shocking sequence of errors. A company representative told the Journal that a review of how Meta handled reports of child sex abuse found a number of issues, such as a “software glitch” that prevented child sex abuse reports from reaching the proper people, and said company staff wasn’t even properly enforcing the rules should a child sex abuse report make it through. Given all that, it might be in Meta’s best interest to indeed pump the “emergency brake.” This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.
With blatant hashtags, a pedophile network has flourished on Instagram. The platform doesn’t merely host these activities. Its algorithms have actively promoted them. https://t.co/gWkVARQWuU— The Wall Street Journal (@WSJ) June 7, 2023