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Using Twitter, Instagram, Facebook over two hours a day bad for kids’ memory

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Ottawa:  Spending more than two hours daily on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram can put your kids at the risk of developing poor mental health, high psychological distress and even suicidal thoughts, new research shows.

“The findings send an important message to parents and suggest an opportunity to increase mental health support service offerings on these websites,” said researchers Hugues Sampasa-Kanyinga and Rosamund Lewis from Ottawa Public Health in Canada.

The duo compared time spent using social networking sites to the teenagers’ self-reports of psychological well-being and unmet needs for mental health support.

They analysed data on students in grades seven-12 from the “Ontario Student Drug Use and Health Survey”.

Nearly 25 percent of students reported using social networking sites for more than two hours daily.

“However, this is where we see social networking sites, which may be a problem for some, and a solution for some,” said Brenda K. Wiederhold from the Interactive Media Institute in San Diego, California.

“Since teenagers are on the sites, it is the perfect place for public health and service providers to reach out and connect with this vulnerable population and provide health promotion systems and supports,” Wiederhold added.

The paper appeared in the journal Cyberpsychology, Behaviour, and Social Networking. (IANS)

 

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Facebook Asks Political Ad Buyers In UK To Reveal Their Identity

While the vast majority of ads on Facebook are run by legitimate organizations, we know that there are bad actors that try to misuse our platform,” Facebook said in a statement.

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A protester wearing a mask with the face of Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg is flanked by two fellow activists wearing angry face emoji masks, during a protest against Facebook policies, in London, Britain (From archives) VOA

Facebook says that anyone who takes out a British political ad on the social media platform will now be forced to reveal their identity, in a bid to increase transparency and curb misinformation.

The company said Tuesday that it will also require disclaimers for any British political advertisements. All the data on the ad buyers will be archived for seven years in a publicly accessible database.

Facebook, India, Fake News
CEO Mark Zuckerberg delivers the keynote address at a Facebook developers conference in San Jose, California. VOA

Facebook is already applying a similar system in the United States, which is holding midterm elections this year.

British lawmakers have called for greater oversight of social media companies and election campaigns to protect democracy in the digital age.

A House of Commons report this year said democracy is facing a crisis because data analysis and social media allow campaigns to target voters with messages of hate without their consent.

Facebook, India, Fake News
This photo shows the app icon on a smartphone in New York. VOA

“While the vast majority of ads on Facebook are run by legitimate organizations, we know that there are bad actors that try to misuse our platform,” Facebook said in a statement. “By having people verify who they are, we believe it will help prevent abuse.”

Also Read: Google Pixel Cameras Coming With External Microphones Support

Facebook said it’s up against “smart and well-funded adversaries who change their tactics as we spot abuse,” but it believes that increased transparency is good for democracy and the electoral process. (VOA)