Calif. minors get second chance for regrettable posts


A bill has recently been passed that will allow students in Calif. to delete embarrassing posts from social networking sites.

Calif. Governor Jerry Brown signed bill SB568 into the state legislature on Sept. 23, 2013. The bill, which will take effect Jan. 2015, ensures that minors can permanently remove posts off any social network outlet.

Bill SB568 will serve as a helping hand to many minors who whose embarrassing posts are published daily. This will allow people under the age of 18 to clean up their social media for their family, and to improve the impression they make with colleges and job opportunities.

Junior Nathan Klebanov argues that “the bill will probably create a lot of problems because if someone is bullying another person online then they could get away with it by having the website delete what they said.”

It also prohibits sites that serve minors to advertise products and services that are illegal for them to possess and use such as tobacco, alcohol, and guns. In addition, websites will not be allowed to use minors’ personal information to sell to a third party.

Social networking sites such as Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter already allow users of any age to delete their posts.

Although this bill will be very helpful for minors, some questions have come up as to how the law will work.

One question that is being asked is how sites will be able to tell if their user is from Calif. and if the user minor.

“Does the bill clearly state what they mean by ‘deleting’ posts requested by minors?” asked sophomore Sam Pipkin.

Since it is only valid in Calif., some website developers argue that it will be cumbersome for them to vary their site depending on which state it is running in.

Also, if a post is needed to be used in a special circumstance, such as a criminal investigation, it is unclear whether or not it could be retrieved.

Another issue was brought up by Carlmont student Cameron Kuo: “Will there be a third party that insures that the provider will delete the content?”

There are many unanswered questions surrounding this new bill, but one thing is for sure: imprudent minors will have a second chance at correcting their social networking decisions.


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