BLUE SPRINGS, Mo. — A Blue Springs mom is suing Meta, the parent company of Facebook and Instagram, because she says it caused mental health problems for her teen daughter.
The mother says her daughter is still struggling with her mental health because of her addiction to social media, and she blames Meta for that.
The lengthy lawsuit, filed last week, alleges the 15-year-old was addicted to Meta platforms after downloading them, and the addiction led to periods of suicidal ideation, self-harm and depression, among other things.
The Blue Springs mom said Meta designed the platforms to be addicting, something she said her daughter wasn’t aware of.
“If that lawsuit succeeds, then we’ll have to stop selling Coca-Cola because my daughter can’t put her Coke down,” attorney Bernie Rhodes said.
But Rhodes, who isn’t affiliated with this case, doesn’t think the lawsuit will go far. He said the social media platforms are doing what they’re created to do.
“They’re saying the whole design of Facebook is addictive, and they it’s especially addictive because people want to watch it for the wrong things,” Rhodes said. “Why do people go to a NASCAR race? To see the crashes.”
The lawsuit accuses Meta of several things, including knowingly exploiting teenage vulnerabilities for unjust gain.
This local mom is just one of several parents to sue Meta, saying the social media addiction endangered their child. The company will now get a chance to reply.
“I’ve never said that social media is a panacea. I don’t use social media, and I know people who do, and it causes a lot of problems. But a lot of cause problems that aren’t illegal,” Rhodes said.
In part, the family’s lawsuit calls for monetary damages to pay for injuries sustained and attorney fees.
FOX4 spoke to the mother’s legal team, who said they will send a statement. We didn’t hear back by time of publication.
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