Technology company leaders are summoned to a legislative session to discuss the protection of minors on digital platforms.

CBS Evening News: CEOs Testify on Child Safety on Social Media

By Jo Ling Kent

Updated on: January 30, 2024 / 9:43 PM EST / CBS News

The Senate Judiciary Committee has summoned the CEOs of major social media platforms to testify on their failure to protect children online. This issue hits close to home for Tammy Rodriguez, whose 11-year-old daughter, Selena, died by suicide after being sexually exploited by online predators due to her extreme social media addiction.

In an exclusive joint interview with CBS News, Democratic committee chair Sen. Dick Durbin and Republican ranking member Sen. Lindsey Graham expressed their concerns over the dangers of social media for children. They both noted that this issue transcends politics and is a personal matter for families.

Rodriguez shared her daughter’s story, revealing that Selena’s relationship with social media started out innocent. However, things quickly spiraled out of control, with Selena having multiple accounts on different platforms and being contacted by men looking to exploit her.

The senators emphasized the responsibility of tech companies to police their platforms and protect children from sexual exploitation. They are working towards passing comprehensive regulations and amending Section 230, a law that currently shields tech giants from being sued by users.

The issue of child safety on social media is one that has united people from different backgrounds and political leanings, with many feeling helpless and begging for action to be taken. The goal is to make sure that no other family has to go through the tragedy that the Rodriguez family has experienced.  

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