California SB 242, proposed by Sen. Ellen Corbett, would force social networks like Facebook to allow parents access to their child’s account(s) and, more importantly, force all privacy settings to their maximum level by default. Parents can request that images or text be removed from any social network page “upon request … within 48 hours upon his or her request.”
This is nuts, not only is it bad for Facebook’s business — it sets a bad precedent for other states to follow. The best move for Facebook is to tell California that if this law is passed two things will happen:
- Facebook will not allow accounts to minors in California (have fun dealing with that backlash CA).
- Facebook will relocate its base of operations to somewhere else — Redmond should have extra room soon enough.
Now, I doubt either of those things would happen — but if somebody told me that I need to help parent their children, well that’s the stance I would take. Also you may be thinking that this would be great for parents because Facebook is evil — to which I respond: if that is your thinking don’t allow your kids to have Facebook in the first place.1
I am fully aware of how hard that is to limit, but there are far worse things your kid can Google than there are on Facebook. ↩