Critics shame Silicon Valley firms over addictive technologies

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Tech industry critics spent a daylong event on Capitol Hill Feb 7 airing concerns that Facebook, Google, Apple and other major companies are peddling addictive products that damage young minds. Critics are seeking some sort of policy to address the problem. “Should there be some common sense regulation of the tech industry? Obviously,” said Jim Steyer, the head of Common Sense, the group that organized the conference. Franklin Foer, the author of a recent book critical of tech powerhouses, said that a “sense of shame” would shift norms in the industry. “Apologies for shaming you,” he said, “but I think that that is the first step of what’s happening right now.” Lawmakers who attended were less willing to attack the industry. Sen Mark Warner (D-VA) said he hoped concerns about tech’s addictive qualities could be addressed through “a collaborative effort with the companies.” Both Sen Ed Markey (D-MA) and Rep John Delaney (D-MD) support a soon-to-be-introduced bill commissioning a National Institutes of Health study on the effects of technology on children.


Critics shame Silicon Valley firms over addictive technologies