The state of Utah filed a lawsuit against TikTok, alleging that the popular social media platform is harming the mental health of children and teens.
The lawsuit is the latest in a series of challenges to TikTok from state officials, who have raised concerns about the app’s addictive nature and its potential to expose young users to harmful content.
The Utah lawsuit alleges that TikTok uses “highly powerful algorithms and manipulative design features” to keep young users on the app for extended periods of time. The complaint also accuses TikTok of deceiving users and parents about the app’s safety and its ties to its Chinese parent company, ByteDance.
Utah Attorney General Sean Reyes said at a news conference that the lawsuit is intended to send a message to TikTok and other social media companies that they will be held accountable for any harm they cause to children.
“Make no mistake that Utah will continue to lead out to protect children from the harms of social media,” Reyes said.
TikTok has denied the allegations in the lawsuit, saying that it has “industry-leading safeguards” for young users.
“We will continue to work to keep our community safe by tackling industry-wide challenges,” a TikTok spokesperson said in a statement.
The sources for this piece include an article in Axios.