What is Instagram?
Instagram is a social media site that allows younger users to post pictures and videos to their profiles and share stories with friends. Stories, which can be photos and video, disappear after 24 hours. The site offers filters for images that change how photos look. Meta Platforms, Inc., doing business as Meta and formerly known as Facebook, Inc., purchased Instagram for $1 billion in 2012.
Why Social Media is Bad for You
Social media sites like Instagram can help teens connect and make new friends. However, for some users, sharing their life online brings added social burdens. About 40% of teens polled by PewResearch.org  feel social media makes them feel pressure to only post content that “makes them look good to others or will generate a lot of likes or comments."
Additionally, social media companies can be hostile, leading to cruel forms of cyberbullying. The poll found that 45% of teenagers feel overwhelmed by the drama found on social media. Nearly half of teen social media users often unfriend or unfollow other people on social media. 78% of the teens polled stated that they unfollowed or blocked users because of too much drama, and 52% cited bullying as the reason to unfollow or unfriend someone.
Instagram Rated WORST Social Media for Kids' Mental Health Problems
According to a recent report by the Royal Society for Public Health in the United Kingdom, Instagram is the worst social media giant for the mental health issues of young people, while Snapchat comes a close second.
Researchers in the study evaluated 1,179 people of a young age living in the UK, who were asked how Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, Twitter and Snapchat made them feel about themselves.
The social media platforms were also rated on the basis of their impact on the quality of sleep, anxiety, mental health, suicidal ideation, eating disorders, depression, fear of missing out (FOMO), loneliness, bullying, and body image issues. The report largely reflected what the participants felt after going through the photo feeds in all the platforms and was conducted to understand their impact on one’s mental health.
Out of these 5 social networking sites, the Instagram platform was found to make the volunteers feel the worst about their mental health. Instagram was slammed for its ability to exploit young girls and adult Instagram users. The primary reason behind the same is said to be the number of filters people use to appear absolutely 'perfect'.
These overtly edited, perfectly ‘candid’ and the ‘golden hour’ images, can instill a strong feeling of comparison and despair, making users feel like they are not doing enough in their lives or their mental health. The sad part is that people actually compare themselves to a photo-shopped version of a photograph, which is carefully chosen, after many trials and errors.
Instagram essentially created the practice of applying layers of filters and carefully editing photos before putting them online for the world to see. Furthermore, witnessing someone else’s false version of perfection can lead to lower levels of life satisfaction and even drastically affect one’s mood and eating disorder, the study found.
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Meta Sued by Mother Over Alleged Role in Daughter's Suicide
A Connecticut mother has filed a lawsuit against Facebook and Instagram parent company Meta, as well as Snap, alleging that the platforms cause a kind of addiction her daughter suffered before committing suicide at age 11 in July 2021.
Plaintiff Tammy Rodriguez claims that the sort of "stickiness" these platforms are built to engender is inherently harmful, especially to young users like her late daughter Selena.
The complaint against parent company Meta states that Selena "struggled for more than two years with an extreme addiction to Instagram and Snapchat," a claim backed by an outpatient therapist who had "never seen a patient as addicted to social media" during their evaluation.
Although technically too young to be on either platform per their terms of service — Instagram and Snapchat state their minimum age for account creation is 13 — Rodriguez points to the absence of parental controls, as well as the lack of strong age verification checks, which made policing her daughter's access to the services nearly impossible.
"The only way for Tammy Rodriguez to effectively limit access to Defendants’ products would be to physically confiscate Selena’s internet-enabled devices and use parental control locks," the lawsuit against parent company Meta alleges, "which simply caused Selena to run away in order to access her social media accounts on other devices."
Rodriguez further contends that use of the services caused her daughter to suffer from depression, sleep deprivation, school absences, eating disorders, and self-harm and led to her eventual suicide.
Get a Free Instagram Lawsuit Evaluation With Our Lawyers
The Social Media Addiction Litigation Group at our law firm is an experienced team of trial lawyers that focus on the representation of plaintiffs in Instagram Lawsuits. We are handling individual litigation nationwide and currently accepting new cases in all 50 states.
Again, if Instagram harmed you, or if your child used Instagram and then committed suicide, developed an eating disorder, or attempted to commit suicide, was hospitalized for emergency psychiatric care due to an Instagram addiction or bullying, you should contact our law firm immediately.
You may be entitled to a settlement by filing a lawsuit against a social media company in district court, and our lawyers can help you receive fair compensation.