Nevada Attorney General Announces Litigation to Address Harms Caused by Social Media Platforms to Nevada’s Youth

Jan. 30, 2024

Carson City, NV – Today, Attorney General Aaron D. Ford announced his office, in conjunction with the law firms of Nachawati Law Group; WH Law; and Kemp Jones, LLP, filed civil actions against five popular social media platforms. The litigation, filed against, TikTok, Snapchat and three Meta-owned platforms, Instagram, Facebook and Messenger, alleges the algorithms used by the platforms have been designed deliberately to addict young minds and prey on teenagers’ well-understood vulnerabilities. The litigation alleges these actions have encouraged problematic internet usage and caused young people harms to mental health, body image, physical health, privacy, and physical safety.

    “My commitment to protecting consumers, particularly those that are as vulnerable as our youth, is unwavering,” said AG Ford. “Bringing this litigation is an important step toward ensuring social media platforms put our children’s safety before their profits. I look forward to working closely with our partners to protect the youth of our state.”

    All of these platforms use features like endless scrolling, dopamine-inducing rewards, disappearing content, likes, shares, push notifications, and other elements to maximize youth use, manipulate young emotions, and exploit children’s developing minds — all for massive financial gain.

    All five of these platforms are enormously popular with young people, and all five are alleged to have sizeable populations of teen users. Further, each platform is alleged to have a large percentage of users under the age of 13, the legal age cutoff for these types of apps. Each of these platforms has also been linked to serious dangers to kids, including auto accidents, increases in drug overdoses, suicides, eating disorders, sexual exploitation and more.

    In the case of Instagram, explosive whistleblower testimony revealed it has known for years that its products are both attractive and harmful to young children and teens. Similarly, TikTok’s endless streams of content have helped make it one of the most addictive apps in the world among children and teens. The Nevada Attorney General’s Office looks forward to working with its outside counsel to bring justice to social-media platforms that have proven to be so dangerous to Nevada’s youth.

    Copies of the redacted complaints are available upon request.