Age checks are becoming more common online as part of efforts to protect children’s safety. Platforms like Roblox are asking users to provide government identification and selfies to verify their age before accessing certain features. This is due to concerns about children’s mental health and exposure to harmful content on the internet, particularly on social media. Several states and countries have proposed or passed laws requiring age checks on websites and apps. Proponents argue that these checks are necessary for creating a safer online environment, similar to age restrictions on other controlled substances. However, privacy advocates express concerns about the impact on privacy and internet freedom. They worry that age checks may lead to increased surveillance and intrusion into users’ personal lives. Additionally, the effectiveness of age checks is disputed, as there are potential loopholes and barriers that could limit access for both minors and adults. This patchwork of access restrictions creates different versions of the internet for different users, based on their age and location. Overall, the debate continues between those advocating for child safety and those concerned about privacy and freedom.
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