Evidence for Social Media Crackdown ‘Small to Mixed’

Matthew Lesh quoted in The Express

IEA Director of Public Policy and Communications Matthew Lesh has been quoted in The Daily Express commenting on reports that the government is considering a ban on under-16s purchasing smartphones.

Matthew said:

“The evidence consistently finds a small to weak and mixed associations between mental health and social media usage. One study, for example, found that wearing glasses negatively impacted youth mental health more than screen time.

“But even if you could prove that social media is to blame for some harm, as it may be in some cases, a ban would be utterly ill-conceived. It would take away a vastly beneficial technology for millions of young people, who use social media to connect, build communities and for entertainment. A prohibition would also risk the development of lower-quality, less-moderated services targeted at younger age groups.”

Read the full article here.