Greetings from the South Dakota Department of Propaganda, where the corn is as high as our attorney general’s eyebrows and winters are colder than an in-law’s shoulder during Thanksgiving. We bring you an update that’s more exciting than a Mount Rushmore nose hair trimming – our very own Marty Jackley, the State Attorney General, has joined the bandwagon of 41 other furious and tech-baffled Attorneys General to sue Meta faster than you can say, “Yes, Grandma, Facebook changed its name.”
Now, ordinarily, the only lawsuits us South Dakotans involve ourselves in are those concerning tractor infringements and bison parking spots but boy, things are heating up here. It seems Mr. Jackley has caught the tech bug, swapping his usual court apparel for hoodies and hipster glasses, and is part of a federal lawsuit filed against Meta, which, in case you’ve been living under a Dakota-sized rock, is the new name of the company that runs Facebook and Instagram.
Now, this lawsuit isn’t about whether cat memes are funnier than dog memes or why radishes always get more likes than broccoli on Instagram. No, no. It’s a tad more serious. Apparently, Meta has been accused of knowing its platforms are as addictive as that darn pumpkin spice latte that shows up every fall and silently sabotages New Year weight loss resolutions.
But it’s not about that innocent addiction, oh no. The issue at hand is the rampant accusation that Meta’s platforms contribute to youth mental health issues. Yes, dear readers, according to this lawsuit, Instagram is more dangerous than your kid’s pet rattlesnake. And to make matters worse, Meta seems to have misled the public about these harms, sort of like labeling a cactus as ‘the perfect cuddle buddy.’
In our AG Jackley’s words, “Social media use, especially the Meta platforms like Facebook and Instagram, has had a leading role in the youth mental health crisis gripping America.” He went on to say, “Such platforms have led to or contributed to physical and emotional harm to children and devastating families. Meta needs to be held accountable for its actions.”
Meanwhile, Florida is off, doing its own thing as usual, filing a separate federal lawsuit. Some things never change. In addition, eight other states couldn’t stand the anticipation and filed their own tickets to the legal rodeo.
As of now, all we can do is watch as the courtroom drama unfolds. Will Meta be held accountable? Or will the case dissolve like a sugar cube in a late-night diner’s cup of coffee? Only time will tell. Until then, remember, friends: don’t believe everything you read, especially if it’s on Facebook… or Meta… or whatever they’re calling themselves these days.