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Is social media just one part of a bigger problem?

Arizona has joined 41 other states in suing Facebook and Instagram owner Meta. Their claim? The social media company has inflicted lasting harm on young people’s mental health, they knew about it, and they profited from it. 

Arizona Attorney General Kris Mayes said Meta has monetized children’s addiction to its platforms, its algorithms purposefully push users into descending rabbit holes in an effort to maximize engagement.

Mayes likened the lawsuit to the huge settlements states won against tobacco companies that concealed their products’ harm to the public’s health in the 1990s. The lawsuit also aims to make Meta stop collecting personal data from kids under 13 without their parents consent, which they say is a violation of state law. 

All of this comes as there is a growing mental health crisis in our country among young people who face increasing rates of anxiety and depression, and suicide rates are up. 

Brad Snyder has done a lot of research into young people's mental health. He studies children and is the host of the Talking About Kids podcast.

He joined The Show to tell us more.

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Lauren Gilger, host of KJZZ's The Show, is an award-winning journalist whose work has impacted communities large and small, exposing injustices and giving a voice to the voiceless and marginalized.