Proposed EU legislation that said children under 16 would have to get parental consent to use social media sites has been voted against.
The last minute addition to new data protection laws said anyone under 16 would have to obtain parental consent before using services like Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat, raising the lower age limit from 13 to 16.
But the proposal has been thrown out, after member states of the EU did not agree on a uniform policy in this area.
Instead, member states will be able to set their own limits, between the age range of 13 to 16.
This ruling was a compromise between the member states, letting each country apply their own age limit.
And the UK government has said it will continue to use the 13 age limit that is currently in place for many internet sites.
The final draft of the bill says: “The processing of personal data of a child below the age of 16 years, or if provided for by Member State law a lower age which shall not be below 13 years, shall only be lawful if and to the extent that such consent is given or authorised by the holder of parental responsibility over the child. “
Speaking about 16 age limit proposed earlier this week, the Anti Bullying Pro said: “This higher age threshold may incentivise children between the ages of 13 and 15 to lie about their age.
“Children aged 13 and above have long accessed online services; an artificial and sudden change to this threshold will likely result in many children between the ages of 13 and 15 lying about their ages in order to continue accessing online services — rather than asking their parents to consent.
“This development would make it far more difficult for online services to offer children age-appropriate guidance and tools to ensure a safe and privacy-protective experience online.”
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