tv Snapchat Tik Tok You Tube Executives Testify on Kids Online Safety -... CSPAN December 2, 2021 7:31pm-7:51pm EST
>> welcome back everyone. i was told that some of my coll welcome back. i was told, a couple of my colleagues were having an opportunity to question. but if they are not here in the next five minutes, they will lose that opportunity. thanks for your patience. i want to give you an opportunity to answer what i think is probably one of the paramount questions on the minds of most parents today. and that is, how are you different from facebook? i mentioned this at the start of the hearing. that you would try to differentiate yourself from facebook, it's not enough to say we are different. i want to give you the opportunity to
tell parents why they should be less fearful and scared of snapchat, tiktok and youtube. >> senator, thank you for the opportunity. again, i think it is very important to understand snapchat is a very different platform. it was created by our founders to be an antidote to social media. our founders saw, very early on, what social media can do to yourself esteem, to your feeling that you have to perform or be perfect. snapchat was a decidedly different platform that was private, safe, where people could talk to the friends they have an area life. you weren't being judged on your perfect posts, your posts weren't intended to be ephemeral the right way a real
life conversation is ephemeral. and it really strengthens relationships. so for parents who may not be sure if snapchat, i would tell them, get on snapchat, understand what your kids are doing. we are going to make it easier for parents, through parental controls, to understand how their parents -- parental controls will help parents understand who their kids are talking to the most, what's their children's privacy or location savings may be. and start a conversation with their parents. because this is a partnership. parents and children ought to come together and talk about -- >> let me interrupt by saying, you know, everything that you've set is fine but it is aspirational. it will work for some parents. in other words, like facebook says, we bring communities together. nothing
to see here that's bad. i understand for a lot of people it may be so, but i am giving you the opportunity to tell us how you protect kids in a way that facebook doesn't. >> yes. it is not only aspirational, but it is something that we live and practice every day. in order to be friends with people on snapchat, you have to be by directional friends. there is no following, no not being invited. these are two way, mutual friendships, where people who are able to speak to one another. an average 14 year old on snapchat only has 30 friends. we don't try to push them to create more friends or make more connections with strangers. we want snap chatters to be connected to the people they are connected to and rely for. >> mr. beckerman? >> let me answer that in three ways. first, we put people first and
particular, as it relates to teens, we put their well-being first. as we outlined, there are so many examples for difficult policy and difficult product races that put -- first. under 16 accounts are private, the way we've built family controls. so, with our actions, everyone can say trust us but unless you are doing actions and putting those actions into place, as we already have, we are not talking today about things that are aspirationally wanted to do. we are doing things we continue to build on. the approach of the company. being open and humble is part of our company culture. and we are open to getting feedback. we are humbled to say that we are not always going to get it right. we will take that feedback and
implemented in a way that we can earn trust, particularly as it relates to protecting teenagers. and the third is, i would encourage parents to have conversations with teenagers. ask them how they use tiktok. asked them how they feel. and from what they are hearing and seeing in the community is that tiktok is an enjoyable experience, it's inclusive, it makes teams feel better. difficult times in the school day. so having those conversations with teens. film a video. to facilitate that conversation. and recognize that tiktok is not a passive experience. it's not just about watching videos. it's about the creativity in making and doing fun videos on the app and that is something that we have seen parents do. and so i think those three would answer the question, senator. >> ms. miller?
>> -- prioritize profits -- >> i think we are -- at maybe you can start again. >> can you hear me now? sorry, senator. thank you for asking this question. for youtube, our mission is to give everyone a voice and show them the world. and as such, when users come to youtube they experienced certain discovery of finding all types of content. but as a company, we do not prioritize profits over safety. we invest heavily and making sure our platforms are safe. and we do not wait to act. we put systems in place that over time we have relied on, and we adapt. we rolled out youtube kids in
2015 when we realized that there was under 13 we're trying to get on the two main platform. it created a space for them on youtube kids. in addition, we are a transparent company. we rolled out our first quarterly transparency report in 2018 and we continue to update that on a quarterly basis, will we share additional metrics and we rolled out the -- view rate earlier this year. we believe in being a company where responsibility is our number one priority, where we are constantly trying to balance freedom of expression with being responsible, something that is ingrained in our dna. we are very proud of the work that we have done. but we know there is always more for us to do. >> i am going to leave to the
parents of america and the world whether or not they find your answers sufficient to distinguish you from facebook. i know for sure with certainty that we need more than just, with all due respect, the kind of answers that you have given to persuade me that we can rely on voluntary action by any of the companies in big tech. and so i think you are going to hear a continuing drumbeat. i hope there will be efforts for reform, and relief and disclosure. i want to read, in that connection, a text that came to my staff. i haven't had the opportunity to review myself yet. but i'm going to read it.
it comes from one of the families whose story i shared anonymously. quote, i've watched the entire hearing. i just heard the senator refer to our experience. stir beckerman's line that her experience is a typical. that is not true. my daughters feed was inundated with suicide ideation videos, self harm videos and anorexia videos. she was feeling depressed and searched for videos on this topic. then, every time she open the app it was more. she could have been feeling better but these videos brought her down again. and inspired her to spend hours making her own similar videos. i also just wanted you to know that she is an honors student,
athlete, president of her student council and all around great kid. mr. beckerman's testimony makes me so angry. >> i say that with all due respect but i want folks watching to know that we are not taking face value what you've told us. i certainly want to give you an opportunity to respond. but un big tech should know that these messages are the real life experiences that people are relating to us, as we go to town meetings, as we talk to them on the phone or by email. that's what we are hearing. that's why you are here. and i think there are a lot of questions still to be answered here. and a lot of intentions
to be disputed. and this will be done in real action and reform. so i would give every one of you an opportunity to make a closing statement if you wish, or not. and i would conclude the hearing. ms. stout? >> chairman blumenthal, thank you again for the opportunity to appear today and i would absolutely agree with you that voluntary measures are not adequate. we have never suggested that voluntary regulation is the way forward. we want to partner with this committee and with congress on what those regulations should look like. and as i wrote in my testimony, we believe that congress's role in pushing forward regulation in the space is absolutely necessary. so thank you for the opportunity to talk to you today about how
snapchat has been prioritizing the safety and well-being of young people in our platform. we see this as our highest priority order. and we will continue to press forward. >> mr. beckerman? >> thank you, senator. this is one of the most important topics for all of us, particularly as parents, as tech companies and as congress to address. we all have a responsibility to protect our teenagers. none of us can do that alone. it can't just be on the parents. it can't just be on a senate can't just be on congress. we have to come together to solve issues. it's a responsibility that we had tiktok take very seriously and have taken tangible actions to do and will continue to do so. i am focused today on legislation. we support stronger privacy
roles. we've done much of that proactively on our own. we support congress acting on age-appropriate design, age appropriate content. this is what we have done proactively and we would like to see congress act. thank you. thank you. >> ms. miller? >> senator, thank you for inviting me to participate. i will close by reiterating what i said at the top in my statement. there is no more important issue than the safety of kids online and i am personally committed. our executives are committed to working with you and other stakeholders, to make sure that the experience that kids have online is one that is healthy and enjoyable. i very much appreciate the concerns that you and your colleagues have shared with us. we will continue to work to improve and earn the trust of parents and
kids and all the other stakeholders working together in this important space. thank you very much. >> i thank each of you for being here. i hope you've grasped the urgency that we feel. the time for platitudes and bro minds is over. we've seen lobbyists at work, we've seen millions raised against us just. i think we are determined this time to overcome them. i hope we will look back on this hearing as a turning point, along with others that are going to continue to hold in this subcommittee. so i thank you for being here today. this hearing is adjourned. when we will hold the hearing record open for two weeks. any senators who would like to submit questions for the record must do so by november 9th.
jen easterly, director of the cybersecurity and infrastructure security agency spoke about the agency's mission and recruiting a talented and diverse workforce. this is hosted by northern virginia technology council. >> thank you, tom. , jen, i want to start by saying, thank you for being here and thank you for your