Hilgers among attorneys general to file lawsuits against Meta

Oct. 24, 2023, 5 p.m. ·

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DOJ said there were flaws the ACLU's report on Omaha Immigration Court. ACLU observed more than 500 cases from April to August 2023. (Archived photo)

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Nebraska Attorney General Mike Hilgers and dozens of others AGs across the country are suing Meta, the parent company of Instagram and Facebook.

The lawsuits allege that Meta intentionally designed its social media apps to be addictive to children and teens, taking advantage of psychological vulnerabilities to make a profit.

“Meta saw an untapped, valuable audience in young kids,” Colorado Attorney General Jared Weiser said. “They chose to deliberately market to them, knowing what they were doing, failing to engage in appropriate, responsible behavior, because they saw an opportunity for profit.

Meta is also accused of knowing about the dangers of its products while leading the public to believe its apps were safe for young users.

Mike Hilgers
Nebraska Attorney General Mike Hilgers

“They misled consumers about the impact of their platform and they contradicted their own internal documents with what they said to the public,” Hilgers said. “That's outrageous, it's appalling, and it's wrong.”

Hilgers says the practices violate Nebraska’s consumer protection laws and the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act.

Attorneys General expressed that the goal of the lawsuits isn't to ban social media for minors, but to stop Meta from using addictive features to hook youth on its apps.

National efforts to investigate Meta have been going on since 2021.

Nebraska is one of 33 states that is pursuing a federal lawsuit filed in the Northern District of California, while Florida is filing its own federal lawsuit.

Seven other states are filing lawsuits in their own state courts.

Hilgers’ office said attorneys general from all lawsuits will continue to work together as litigation continues.