Wall Street Journal report calling Instagram toxic for teen girls prompts Facebook changes
A new published report by the Wall Street Journal says that Instagram is bad for the mental health of its younger users.
The Wall Street Journal found that Instagram, which is owned by Facebook, is making young people, particularly teenage girls, feel worse about themselves and their body image. The newspaper says that internal research was conducted by Facebook, which is unwilling to show it to the public.
According to the research, teens blame Instagram for an increase in anxiety and depression.
Jericho Middle School administrators say they have been promoting a bullying prevention program, talking to students about social media, positive body image and being authentic.
"That picture is only a snippet of that person's life that's why at Jericho we promote community," says Aisha Breland-Henry, a social worker at the middle school. "We encourage everybody to talk to each other and understand each other's interest. We're all the same."
Dr. Victor Fornari, director of the Division of Child Psychiatry at the Zucker Hillside Hospital, says schools and parents need to be more involved in what kids are up to on social media.
"Schools have to have a more robust curriculum about the impact of the internet and social media, and I think parent education should be geared in PTA meetings, so parents understand that when kids are on the phone it needs to be monitored," says Fornari.
The research found 32% of teenage girls said they felt bad about their bodies and Instagram only made them feel worse.