EXCLUSIVE: Gov. Sanders Endorses Legislation Requiring Major Social Media Platforms Verify Minors’ Ages Before Granting Access

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Henry Rodgers Chief National Correspondent
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Republican Arkansas Gov. Sarah Huckabee Sanders will introduce legislation Thursday that would require major social media companies verify that new users are 18 years old before allowing them access to a social media platform.

The Daily Caller first obtained a copy of the legislation, titled the Social Media Safety Act. The bill would make it so that any underage new user in Arkansas must have consent from a parent or guardian before accessing a social media platform. The bill also calls for social media companies to enable a third-party age verification tool on their platform.

The third party must validate new users with a government-issued identification card, a digital identification card or any commercially reasonable age verification method. The legislation also prohibits third-party verifiers from retaining user information and data. (RELATED: EXCLUSIVE: Gov. Sarah Huckabee Sanders Says Arkansas Will File Lawsuit Against The EPA)

“Social media companies want the most users possible, as young as possible, with as little parental supervision as possible. That’s even after study after study has shown that the more a child uses these platforms, the more their mental health suffers. These companies are exploiting our kids for profit, plain and simple,” Sanders told the Caller before introducing the legislation.

“Under my administration, Arkansas is fighting back. The days of unaccountable Big Tech companies are over. We’re bringing parents’ rights back to America,” she added.

The bill clearly defines social media companies and does not apply to YouTube, digital streaming platforms, blogs, publishing platforms and texting-type communication platforms. It would not apply to businesses that generate less than $100 million per year.

Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, Twitter and TikTok are some of the social media platforms that would be subject to the legislation. (RELATED: ‘Doubling Down On Crazy’: Sarah Huckabee Sanders Slams Biden In GOP Rebuttal To State Of The Union Address)


(DAILY CALLER OBTAINED) — … by Henry Rodgers

Social media companies that fail to comply with the legislation can face criminal and civil prosecution by the Attorney General’s office, according to the bill. Parents could also hold social media companies liable in civil court for failing to comply with the legislation. (RELATED: EXCLUSIVE: Arkansas Gov. Sarah Huckabee Sanders To Sign Executive Order Promoting Hunting, Fishing)

Sanders is expected to announce the legislation at an event later Thursday. She is introducing the legislation along with State Sen. Tyler Dees and State Rep. Jon Eubanks.