Meta, the conglomerate responsible for the virtual reality platform Horizon Worlds, has unveiled its plan to permit youngsters aged 13 and above in the United States and Canada to use the app, disregarding the worries expressed by legislators and non-governmental organizations over the probable adverse impacts on their mental health. Horizon Worlds is a fundamental aspect of CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s proposal for the subsequent generation of the internet, which will allow individuals to physically socialize in virtual domains. Although Meta contends that it has established protective measures in consultation with parents and experts in online safety, detractors have accused the company of jeopardizing young users and have voiced apprehensions about privacy risks, deceitful advertising, and mistreatment or harassment. The corporation has asserted that it will reduce the visibility of teenage users’ accounts and movements to other users via default configurations and will assign content evaluations to virtual spaces that may be intended for more mature audiences.

Community interest groups have raised concerns about the potential hazards connected to Meta’s VR programs, such as the gathering of biometric data and other information, inequitable and fraudulent marketing, and the possibility of mistreatment or harassment. In the meantime, the US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is said to be intensifying its scrutiny of the potential impact of social media on mental health and is attempting to engage in-house psychologists to handle concerns relating to the association between social media usage and mental health concerns among adolescents. Alvaro Bedoya, an FTC commissioner, has acknowledged that some social media applications may cause harm to certain groups of teenagers and children.