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All content by Kyle E. Mitchell, who is not your lawyer.

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Utah Social Media Regulation Acttwo new laws on social media and children

The state of Utah recently passed two laws, SB 311 and SB 152, introducing a Utah Social Media Regulation Act. The laws are full of rules and requirements for social media platforms accessed by children under eighteen.

For those wondering if the new laws will apply to them come March 1, 2024, the key provision will likely be the definition of “social media company”, common to both laws:

“Social media company” means a person or entity that:

(a) provides a social media platform [defined term] that has at least 5,000,000 account holders [defined term] worldwide; and

(b) is an interactive computer service [defined term].

“Interactive computer service” is defined quite broadly.

“Social media platform” is defined in terms of ability to create profiles, make and see posts, and interact with other users. There are a number of carve-outs from “social media platform”, most of which are based on having a listed “predominant or exclusive function” and the provider being the source of most content, with interaction centering around that content.

On quick glance, I believe all of the major obligations, prohibitions, and legal “causes of action”—things you can sue for—in these twin bills are worded in terms of “social media company”. Not in terms of “social media platform” alone, regardless of number of account holders.

As always, if you need a definitive yay-nay on whether these new laws apply to your business, don’t rely on this blog post. Hire a lawyer who will stand professionally responsible to you for an answer.

Your thoughts and feedback are always welcome by e-mail.

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