Instagram really, really wants to know your birthday

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Instagram will now require all of its users to provide their birthdays in order to use the social media service. The company announced that the move is needed in order to “create safer, more private experiences for young people.” Users have been able to share their birthdays with the company for a while now, but anyone who hasn’t will now be required to. The company says that, for those who have not provided their birthday yet, the app will prompt you for it a number of times before turning off access completely. The company is also going to start requiring a birthday in order to see posts with warning screens on them.
Company Said: 

  • First, we’ll start to ask you for your birthday when you open Instagram. We’ll show you a notification a handful of times and if you haven’t provided us with your birthday by a certain point, you’ll need to share it to continue using Instagram. This information is necessary for new features we’re developing to protect young people.
  • Second, if you see warning screens placed on posts, we’ll ask you for your birthday before you can see the post. These screens aren’t new, and we already show them on posts that may be sensitive or graphic, but we don’t currently ask for your birthday when viewing these posts. Now, we’ll start asking for your birthday on some of these screens if you haven’t shared it with us previously.

Instagram also says that if it doesn’t have your birthday, it’ll ask for it before showing you posts that are marked as sensitive. The company says these efforts are part of its work to make the platform safer for young people. The company says, in the future, it’ll use its age detection AI to sniff out people who are lying about their ages. According to its press release, if someone says they’re above a certain age like 13 or 18, but the AI says otherwise, Instagram will have them verify their age using a variety of methods.
 

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