We know technology affects our kids, but how much is up for debate. Going into effect in 2023, The Children and Media Research Advancement Act (CAMRA Act) is a first-of-its-kind bill to research the long term effects and developmental impacts technology use and media consumption has on infants, children, and teens. So what do you need to know about the CAMRA Act?
What Is The CAMRA Act?
The CAMRA Act gives $25 million for two fiscal years to the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the Department of Health and Human Services to research the effects of technology and media on children’s development. The findings are hoped to help parents, lawmakers, and educators make informed decisions about our children’s technology usage and prepare for the next generation of tech, such as the Metaverse or AI.
Will Investigate How Tech & Media Are Affecting Our Kids
Children’s screen time has doubled since the start of the pandemic, becoming a startling realization of just how much time our kids spend on, with, or around smart devices. The CAMRA Act will look into three main sectors of how technology is affecting child development including:
- Cognitive: How technology and media use affects our children’s language development, attention spans, executive functioning, problem solving skills, literacy, critical thinking, and other learning abilities as they spend more time on screens and less with real-life relationships.
- Physical: How tech use affects our kid’s physical development including diet, exercise, eating habits, sleep, and other health behaviors and what long term effects this has in our children’s most formidable years.
- Socio-emotional: How exposure to technology and media impacts our children’s self-awareness, social awareness, interpersonal skills, self-regulation, empathy, and social cues along with their relationship to media and being able to distinguish their role in a digital marketplace.
Researches The Consequences Of Being Online
Ranging from privacy violations, cyberbullying, violence, aggression, depression, anxiety, substance abuse, and suicide, CAMRA will look into the the consequences of screen usage and what it means for kids.
Why Does It Matter?
What spearheaded this bill was a leaked Facebook memo calling kids under 10 an “untapped audience.” Combined with study after study detailing the effects extensive screen time has on our kids, it’s the first time we’ll have a long-term, longitudinal view as to how media and technology impacts our children over time. This research will also help law and policymakers create regulations and restrictions against Big Tech and social media companies, specifically relating to children and their private information. It’s overdue, but hopefully will help shed light in allowing parents to make the best decisions for their children.