I have to admit something: when I write about Fairplay’s year in review, it seems like I always say that this year was our biggest and best yet. The thing is, it’s true!
In 2022, Fairplay built on the incredible momentum and success of years past and reached tremendous new heights. From drafting groundbreaking legislation to releasing essential new research on the impact of social media on young people, we’ve had a truly amazing 2022.
Of course, we couldn’t do this without our supporters. Will you support Fairplay with a year-end donation to ensure 2023 is even bigger and better than 2022?
Read on to take stock of Fairplay’s impressive work in 2022.
Fairplay on Capitol Hill
This year, Fairplay’s legislative work in Washington took leaps and bounds. Not only did we help author two essential bills to protect young people online, but our agenda even made it into President Biden’s State of the Union address! On top of that, we placed op-eds in support of kids’ online protections from our members in newspapers across the country, held a rally for the Kids Online Safety Act and COPPA 2.0 with Senators Ed Markey and Richard Blumenthal, and organized two successful visits to our nation’s capital with moms whose children had suffered serious social media harms.
Our Action Network in action
Fairplay’s Screen Time Action Network had an amazing year, from the launch of NextGen Connect, a new youth mentoring program, to our first in-person gathering of members in nearly five years! In February, the Network’s Interfaith Work Group launched an incredibly successful letter to Mark Zuckerberg, calling on him to scrap Instagram for kids for good. And in March, we released The Harms, a podcast exploring the devastating stories behind social media harms.
Putting Big Tech In Line
Our work with federal regulators continued apace in 2022. In June, we filed a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission against EA Games for the wildly manipulative loot box tactics used in its hugely popular game, FIFA: Ultimate Team. The next month, we called on the Commission to prohibit influencer marketing to minors given its unfair impact on young people. And just last month, we made two more fillings with the FTC: one asking the Commission to ban unfair online manipulation of minors, and another urging the Commission to use its authority to eliminate surveillance advertising to young people.
Our cutting-edge research
In 2022, Fairplay published a number of original reports with shocking findings on kids’ and teens’ experiences on social media. In April, our Designing for Disorder report showed how Instagram was promoting pro-eating disorder content to children as young as nine on the platform. In July, we published research showing how young people using major social media platforms have vastly different online protections depending on where they live. And in October, we demonstrated the ease with which children can find dangerous viral challenges on a number of social media platforms.