Google Play mobile download button
Apple IOS mobile download button
Google Play mobile download button
Apple IOS mobile download button
HomeU.K.Molly Russell’s father attacks Instagram’s ‘disappointing’ stance on online harms

Molly Russell’s father attacks Instagram’s ‘disappointing’ stance on online harms

'Quick read' news summary

The father of Molly Russell has claimed Instagram’s conscience has not been “pricked” by the death of his daughter after a “disappointing” response was sent to a coroner. Andrew Walker, the senior coroner who heard the case, sent his report on preventing future death to ministers, Instagram’s parent company Meta, Pinterest and Snapchat. All three social media companies have since written back to the coroner to explain their response to the tragedy.

The father of Molly Russell has claimed Instagram’s conscience has not been “pricked” by the death of his daughter after a “disappointing” response was sent to a coroner. 

The criticism by Ian Russell came as ministers will decide on Monday whether to offer concessions to nearly 50 Tory MPs seeking to jail social media bosses who fail to protect children from online harms – or risk defeat on their amendment on Tuesday when the Online Safety Bill returns to the Commons.

Last year, an inquest concluded that social media played a part in the death of the 14-year-old, who took her life in her bedroom in Nov 2017. 

Privately battling depression, the schoolgirl had spent months binging on suicide and self-harm imagery on platforms including Instagram and Pinterest. 

Andrew Walker, the senior coroner who heard the case, sent his report on preventing future death to ministers, Instagram’s parent company Meta, Pinterest and Snapchat. 

He set out an array of concerns about children using the platforms, including the lack of separation between children and adults, how algorithms feed more potentially dangerous material to children, and the absence of robust age verification. 

All three social media companies have since written back to the coroner to explain their response to the tragedy. However, Mr Russell expressed his “disappointment” at the lack of meaningful action they contain. 

Meta, in an eight-page letter, reiterated many of the points that Elizabeth Lagone, its head of health and wellbeing policy, made during her evidence to the inquest. 

It said that users could “mute”, unfollow or hide material from accounts to control what content they see and claimed it had introduced “sensitive content control” which allows users to choose whether or not to view potentially “sensitive

Read different perspectives

Searching for related articles, please check back here later!