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Gov. DeSantis vetoes social media bill

Would have prohibited anyone under 16 in Florida from having an account with specific social media platforms.
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Posted at 3:45 PM, Mar 01, 2024
and last updated 2024-03-01 16:08:55-05

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Gov. Ron DeSantis has vetoed HB1, the social media bill, which would have prohibited anyone under 16 in Florida from having an account with specific social media platforms.

The governor had concerns about it, saying "Protecting children from harms associated with social media is important, as is supporting parents’ rights and maintaining the ability of adults to engage in anonymous speech."

Many of the provisions in the bill will get amended into House Bill 3, which targets age verification for adult websites. House Speaker Paul Renner had recently called it a "poison pill."

Shortly after the veto, Renner took to X, formerly known as Twitter, to talk about HB3.

"HB 3 will empower parents to control what their children can access online while also protecting minors from the harm caused by addictive social media platforms," Renner said. "Next week, the Senate will hear HB 3, which, once amended, will strengthen our definitions of social media and its addictive features."

Lawmakers do not have much time to make changes at the legislative session ends on March 8.

CNN reports the bill’s description of social media platforms that would fall under the requirements appears to be wide-ranging.

The bill includes social media companies that allow users to upload content and have at least 10% of its daily active users under the age of 16 spend at least two hours a day on the platform, on average. It also includes companies that use algorithms to analyze data and have push alerts and continuous scrolling or auto-play video.