The Future of Mobile

Facebook pauses "Instagram Kids" project

David Murphy

Facebook is pausing its “Instagram Kids” project, which aimed to create an Instagram experience for children under the age of 13, the company has announced in a blog post.

In the post, Head of Instagram Adam Mosseri, said that while Facebook stands by the need to develop this experience, it has paused the project to give the company time to “work with parents, experts, policymakers and regulators, to listen to their concerns, and to demonstrate the value and importance of this project for younger teens online today.”

He went on to deny that pausing the project was not an acknowledgement that the project is a bad idea. “The reality is that kids are already online, and we believe that developing age-appropriate experiences designed specifically for them is far better for parents than where we are today,” he wrote, noting that both YouTube and TikTok have versions of their app for those under 13. 

If and when it does launch, it will be aimed at children aged 10-12, will require parental permission to join, and won’t have ads. Parents will be supervise the time their children spend on the app and oversee who can message them, who can follow them and who they can follow.

The post concludes: “I have three children and their safety is the most important thing in my life. I hear the concerns with this project, and we’re announcing these steps today so we can get it right.”