Following Montana’s legal action, TikTok is once again facing scrutiny, this time from the state of Utah. Utah has taken a legal stance against the platform, alleging that it not only deceives users about its safety measures but also encourages harmful social media habits among children.
While Utah is not the first state to take such action (Arkansas and Indiana have also filed similar lawsuits), this case underscores the urgent need for a national conversation. The U.S. Supreme Court is currently considering the legality of state regulations on social media platforms, and the Utah lawsuit could be a catalyst for nationwide policy changes.
TikTok has stated that it has imposed a 60-minute time limit for children.
This lawsuit comes after Utah became the first U.S. state to pass laws designed to limit excessive social media app use by children and teenagers, including TikTok. These laws, set to take effect next year, will establish digital curfews and require parental consent for minors, positioning Utah as a pioneer in regulating this space.
Critics argue that these laws may infringe on children’s privacy, potentially affecting vulnerable groups. However, the growing public health concerns are hard to overlook. Studies cited in the lawsuit suggest that children spending over three hours a day on social media may be at twice the risk of experiencing poor mental health outcomes. In light of these concerning statistics, Utah Attorney General Sean Reyes contends that the app’s algorithm functions like a “cruel slot machine” that ensnares young minds.
In response, TikTok claims to have already implemented safety measures, including a 60-minute time limit for users under 18. Nevertheless, the Utah lawsuit demands more, including fines, penalties, and adjustments to the app’s “destructive behavior.”