• Home
  • Apps
  • Apps News
  • TikTok Wins Immunity From Lawsuit Over Death of 10 Year Old Girl in Deadly 'Blackout Challenge'

TikTok Wins Immunity From Lawsuit Over Death of 10-Year-Old Girl in Deadly 'Blackout Challenge'

TikTok was granted immunity from the lawsuit by a US court under a part of the federal Communications Decency Act that shields publishers of others' work.

TikTok Wins Immunity From Lawsuit Over Death of 10-Year-Old Girl in Deadly 'Blackout Challenge'

Photo Credit: Unsplash/ Folen Feyissa

TikTok and its Chinese parent company ByteDance were sued by the child's mother in May

Highlights
  • TikTok was accused of causing the death of a 10-year-old girl
  • The girl choked herself using a purse strap hung in her mother's closet
  • TikTok and other firms are facing a growing number of lawsuits

TikTok won dismissal of a lawsuit accusing it of causing the death of a 10-year-old girl by promoting a deadly "blackout challenge" that encouraged people to choke themselves on its video-based social media platform. US District Judge Paul Diamond in Philadelphia ruled Tuesday that the company was immune from the lawsuit under a part of the federal Communications Decency Act that shields publishers of others' work.

"The wisdom of conferring such immunity is something properly taken up with Congress, not the courts," Diamond wrote.

Jeffrey Goodman, a lawyer for the girl's mother, Tawainna Anderson, said in a statement that the family would "continue to fight to make social media safe so that no other child is killed by the reckless behavior of the social media industry."

TikTok did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Anderson sued TikTok and its Chinese parent company ByteDance in May, saying the company's algorithm showed her daughter, Nylah Anderson, a video suggesting the blackout challenge.

In December 2021, Nylah attempted the blackout challenge using a purse strap hung in her mother's closet, losing consciousness, and suffering severe injuries, according to the lawsuit. She was rushed to a hospital but died five days later.

TikTok and ByteDance moved to dismiss the case, saying that under Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, they could not be held liable for publishing third-party content. Diamond, while saying that the circumstances were "tragic," agreed.

TikTok and other social media companies, including Facebook and Instagram parent Meta and YouTube parent Alphabet, are facing a growing number of lawsuits around the country seeking to hold them liable for causing young people to become addicted to their products, and in some cases causing harm including eating disorders, self-injury and suicide.

A federal judicial panel earlier this month consolidated dozens of such cases in a new mass tort in a federal court in Oakland, California.
© Thomson Reuters 2022


How is Alexa faring in India? We discuss this on Orbital, the Gadgets 360 podcast. Orbital is available on Spotify, Gaana, JioSaavn, Google Podcasts, Apple Podcasts, Amazon Music and wherever you get your podcasts.

Helplines
Vandrevala Foundation for Mental Health9999666555 or help@vandrevalafoundation.com
TISS iCall022-25521111 (Monday-Saturday: 8 am to 10 pm)
(If you need support or know someone who does, please reach out to your nearest mental health specialist.)

Affiliate links may be automatically generated - see our ethics statement for details.
Comments

For the latest tech news and reviews, follow Gadgets 360 on Twitter, Facebook, and Google News. For the latest videos on gadgets and tech, subscribe to our YouTube channel.

Further reading: TikTok, Algorithms
God of War Ragnarök Photo Mode to Come After Launch, Santa Monica Studio Reveals
Share on Facebook Tweet Snapchat Share Reddit Comment google-newsGoogle News
 
 

Advertisement

Follow Us

Advertisement

© Copyright Red Pixels Ventures Limited 2023. All rights reserved.