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Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s request to dismiss lawsuits alleging his personal responsibility for fostering social media addiction has been granted.

US District Judge Yvonne Gonzalez Rogers ruled on Monday that Zuckerberg is not personally liable, although the case against Meta, the company behind Facebook and Instagram, will continue.


The lawsuits, representing young users, claim that Facebook and Instagram possess addictive features specifically designed to hook children. Critics have highlighted that Zuckerberg ignored warnings about the platforms’ safety for minors, despite having detailed knowledge of the potential harm to this demographic. The complaints emphasized that Zuckerberg’s failure to act on these dangers, given his prominent role and the public statements he made about the safety of Meta’s platforms, should attribute direct liability to him.

However, Judge Rogers ruled that Zuckerberg did not have a unique obligation to disclose safety information, noting the absence of a “special relationship” between him and the platform’s younger users. “The plaintiffs in the case have not pled any relationship—let alone a ‘special’ one—between themselves and Zuckerberg. This theory fails,” Rogers said in her ruling.

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The ruling also allows for the possibility of refiling the lawsuits with more focused allegations concerning Zuckerberg’s involvement. Rogers instructed those filing against Zuckerberg to consolidate their claims into a single document, outlining their specific concerns regarding his role.

This development in the courtroom follows a series of other legal challenges faced by major tech entities like Google, TikTok, and Snapchat over concerns about social media’s impact on younger audiences.


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