Snapchat is facing a lawsuit over claims that the app is guilty of routinely serving sexually explicit content to minors without warning (via The Verge).

The lawsuit was filed this week by a 14-year-old boy and his mother in a district court in California. The plaintiffs argue that offensive content was shown in Snapchat's Discover page, where non-subscribed publications are delivered to user feeds.

Snapchat
The lawsuit says that by routinely including sexually explicit content without providing adequate warnings, the app's Discover feature is in violation of the Communications Decency Act:

Millions of parents in the United States today are unaware that Snapchat is curating and publishing this profoundly sexual and offensive content to their children. By engaging in such conduct directed at minors, and making it simple and easy for users to 'snap' each other's content from Snapchat Discover, Snapchat is reinforcing the use of its service to facilitate problematic communications, such as 'sexting,' between minors. Snapchat has placed profit from monetizing Snapchat Discover over the safety of children.

The lawsuit, which is seeking class-action status, seeks civil penalties and a requirement that Snapchat includes an in-app warning about sexual content.

Publishers regularly create specialized content for the platform and Snapchat receives advertising revenue from these partners in return. Users can subscribe to specific publisher channels, but the Discover page brings exposure to publishers they have not subscribed to.

Snapchat claims its partners have editorial independence, but according to The Verge (also a content provider for Snapchat) the company reportedly exercises a heavy hand in guiding the look and feel of published stories.

Snapchat is rated in the App Store as appropriate for children ages 12 and over, noting that it may contain infrequent or mild sexual content, nudity, suggestive themes, profanity, and references to drugs and alcohol. That contrasts with Snapchat's terms of service, which restrict use to children 13 and older.

You can read the lawsuit here.

Top Rated Comments

nStyle Avatar
61 months ago
If some higher life form judged about us from this younger generation i'd say we have no hope. A younger generation i know sends a properly formulated message or email with no ******** emoji and grammar errors like it's supposed to be.
...said every generation before you.
Score: 21 Votes (Like | Disagree)
alexgowers Avatar
61 months ago
Snapchat is not a youth thing it's a 20s-40s thing. And i'm sorry but sex and bodies are not something that should be hidden from children by companies, it should be adults/parents/guardians who "protect the child" from what they consider offensive. You can't hold companies 100% to blame, any compensation they give to the child should be equal to what the parent is required to pay in compensation. It should cut both ways.
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
keysofanxiety Avatar
61 months ago
To use proper grammar? Certainly.
A lot of people have always had bad grammar. There are now just more mediums for it to become apparent. Plus people from previous generations who go onto have children don't encourage them to articulate themselves appropriately -- and so the cycle goes on.

So I'm blaming the older generation :p
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)
GrumpyMom Avatar
61 months ago
Well, the 'alternate' primordial use of Snapchat is sexting and nudes, if parents don't know that by now, they are very lost.
Well as a parent I did not know that. But I assume everything these days is used for sexting and nudes. It saves time and energy having to keep up with all the crap coming at kids from everywhere.

It's a shame there aren't many safe harbors for kids anymore. But it is what it is. And so my husband and I diligently sift through the kids' communications. The tricky part is dealing with the fact we can't control what a kid sees and hears at a friend's house if the friend's parents aren't as diligent and tech savvy. So we have to do a lot of talking about our expectations and what we deem appropriate or inappropriate and downright stupid and degrading and self destructive online activity and how we expect our child to react to peer pressure. And we have to do so in a way that doesn't scare a kid off from confiding in us. My daughter sees me as a "cool mom" so I'm let in on a lot. For now. My position is always as precarious as that of a cop working with a mob snitch and requires as much finesse. :eek::confused:

Despite all that effort, we'd have to be incredibly naive and stupid to think some stuff isn't getting past us once in awhile. We were kids once, too...
Score: 7 Votes (Like | Disagree)
thisisnotmyname Avatar
61 months ago
This mother is so concerned about her son being exposed to sex that she allows him to have snapchat. Case dismissed.
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)
RightMACatU Avatar
61 months ago
Dang! Where were these apps when I was 14?
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

bloodoxygenapplewatch

Apple Watch Series 7 to Gain Breakthrough New Health Feature

Friday March 5, 2021 5:34 am PST by
Apple is reportedly planning to bring a new, first-of-its-kind health technology to the Apple Watch Series 7, in what could be a breakthrough for managing conditions such as diabetes more easily. According to a recent report from ETNews, the Apple Watch Series 7 will feature blood glucose monitoring via a non-invasive optical sensor. Measuring blood glucose levels, also known as blood...
apple transfer google photos 1

Apple Launches Service for Transferring iCloud Photos and Videos to Google Photos

Wednesday March 3, 2021 12:04 pm PST by
Apple this week introduced a new service that's designed to make it quick and easy for iCloud users to transfer their stored photos and videos to Google Photos. As outlined in an Apple support document, you can go to Apple's privacy website and sign in to see the "Transfer a copy of your data" option. If you select this and go through all the steps, Apple will transfer your iCloud photos and ...
imac pro featured black

Apple Confirms iMac Pro Will Be Discontinued When Supplies Run Out, Recommends 27-Inch iMac

Saturday March 6, 2021 7:33 am PST by
Apple on late Friday evening added a "while supplies last" notice to its iMac Pro product page worldwide, and removed all upgrade options for the computer, leaving only the standard configuration available to order for now. We've since confirmed with Apple that when supplies run out, the iMac Pro will no longer be available whatsoever. Apple says the latest 27-inch iMac introduced in August...
Oled iPads and MackBook Pro

OLED 10.9-Inch iPad Rumored for Early 2022, 12.9-Inch iPad Pro and 16-Inch MacBook Pro Could Follow

Thursday March 4, 2021 8:37 pm PST by
Earlier today, DigiTimes shared a preview of an upcoming report claiming that Apple is working on both iPad and Mac notebook models with OLED displays that could launch starting in 2022. The full report from DigiTimes is now available, and it includes several new alleged details about Apple's plans. According to the report, the first of these devices to adopt an OLED display is likely to be...
apple products refurbished store banner

Class Action Lawsuit Over Apple Providing Refurbished Replacement Devices Proceeding to Trial in August

Friday March 5, 2021 9:53 am PST by
Initially filed in 2016, a class action lawsuit that accuses Apple of violating the Magnusson-Moss Warranty Act, Song-Beverly Consumer Warranty Act, and other U.S. laws by providing customers with refurbished replacement devices is set to proceed to trial August 16, according to a notice this week from law firm Hagens Berman Sobol Shapiro LLP. Apple's repair terms and conditions state that,...
iPhone 13 Notch Feature2

iPhone 13 Rumor Recap: Smaller Notch, Larger Batteries, 120Hz for Pro Models, Improved 5G, Wi-Fi 6E, and More

Friday March 5, 2021 8:20 am PST by
While we are likely at least six months away from Apple unveiling the so-called iPhone 13 lineup, rumors about the devices are starting to accumulate, so we've put together this recap of everything that is expected so far. The upcoming iPhone 13 lineup will consist of the same four models and the same screen sizes as the iPhone 12 lineup, according to reputable analyst Ming-Chi Kuo,...
maxresdefault

What's on Your iPhone Home Screen?

Thursday March 4, 2021 10:31 am PST by
Over on our YouTube channel, MacRumors videographer Dan has a new video up where he shares his Home Screen, wallpaper, and all of his current favorite widgets. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. Check out Dan's video to see his setup, and then comment below and show us your own Home Screens. It's always fun to see other peoples' Home Screens, and with widgets and...
OLED iPad Pro and MacBook Pro

iPad and MacBook Models With OLED Displays Rumored to Launch in 2022

Thursday March 4, 2021 8:19 am PST by
Apple plans to release new iPad and MacBook models with OLED displays in 2022, according to industry sources cited by Taiwanese supply chain publication DigiTimes. The information was shared in the site's paywalled "Before Going to Press" section, so there are no further details yet, but the full report should be released by tomorrow. Apple has gradually increased its adoption of OLED...
Top Stories 48

Top Stories: iPhone 13 Leaks, OLED iPads and Macs, New AirTags Evidence

Saturday March 6, 2021 6:00 am PST by
iPhone rumors are heating up, with noted analyst Ming-Chi Kuo this week releasing a wide-ranging report outlining his expectations for the iPhone lineup over the next three years. This week also saw rumors about OLED displays potentially coming to iPad and Mac starting next year, increasing signs of AirTags functionality in iOS 14.5 betas, and more, so check out all of the details below! i...
imac pro while supplies last

iMac Pro No Longer Custom Configurable, Available 'While Supplies Last'

Friday March 5, 2021 10:14 pm PST by
Apple appears to be on the verge of discontinuing the iMac Pro, with the store page for the high-end all-in-one Mac including a "While supplies last" tagline and only the base model with no custom configurations available for purchase. The iMac Pro launched in December 2017, and while there have been a few tweaks to the available configurations over the years, it has received no substantial...